Preparedness month: 30 days in 30 ways
Again this year, there’s been no let-up in the crisis response world, writes Monika Al-Mufti.
It doesn’t exactly look like as there will be any going forward if we’re reading, and planning for, the writing on the wall that is our planetary climate emergency with its myriad of challenges. To mitigate and prepare for the ever-increasing risks we all face takes a whole-of -ociety approach at all levels. Crucially, it also takes political will and so I was very heartened by this year’s European Civil Protection Forum (Brussels, June 28 – 29, 2022) that set out to tackle ‘Towards faster, greener and smarter emergency management’ under four key policy areas which, naturally, includes the prime directive to protect citizens (lives and livelihoods) and adapting to new risks.
Early warning, education to understand risks as well as ways and means towards enabling protective actions are key, all elements that have been on the disaster risk reduction agenda for some time. Most encouragingly at the Brussels forum, Charlotte Petri Gornitzka, the General Director of the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, called for the creation of a European ‘Preparedness Month’ (click here). That is a massive step, and I hope that Europe will model, adapt and extend the American version #NatlPrep National Preparedness Month.
How best to get the word out to as many people as possible with minimal investment? Leverage social media is one of the answers which is why, since 2015 ‘#30days30waysUK September is Preparedness Month’ has been run by local emergency planners across Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
Our approach is positive psychology based and gamified to inspire and inform personal action towards household preparedness and community resilience. The programme, fully open source, adaptable and transferrable, is based on the National Risk Register in the UK and has just been released.
New for 2022, and a world first in this context, is a weekly live streamed and recorded panel of partners from local authorities, health, the emergency services, NGOs and experts to discuss the programme topics, offer insight and highlight resources in addition to Q&A opportunities.
This way, we hope to break down barriers and build trust through open dialogue while leveraging ‘experts as positive role models’ to inspire resilience.
To find out more follow #30days30waysUK throughout September and visit 30days30waysUK.org.uk.