AAFB tackles preparedness month with informative activities

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Trenton Jancze
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

September is National Preparedness Month, a month long campaign to promote emergency awareness and preparedness for natural and man-made disasters. The 97th Civil Engineer Squadron's Emergency Management Flight shared ready.gov’s 2021 theme of "Prepare to protect; Preparing for disasters is protecting everyone you love," by hosting a variety of activities throughout the month.

The activities included setting up information booths at different events, visiting local schools for educational fun and hosting a preparedness kit making event.  

“Preparedness month allows the EM flight to engage with the installation; to make sure we are taking care of the base populace and local community,” said Sam Hawkins, 97th CES installation emergency manager. “We’re ensuring that they are aware of potential emergencies that could happen and that they’re prepared for them.”

Information booths and the preparedness kit making event were organized as an opportunity to educate Airmen and their families on the importance of being prepared for disasters.

“We try to do everything we can with the community to get people to come out and build camaraderie, as well as educate them at the same time,” said Senior Airman Angel Colbert, 97th CES Emergency Management Flight operations lead. “Altus is part of ‘Tornado Alley’, so Airmen need to be prepared because they might not know what to do in those sorts of scenarios.”

According to Colbert, it is important for parents to be aware of the needs of their children during disasters as well.

“Kids are different from adults and they have specific and unique needs,” said Colbert. “We try to make sure they are involved and on the same page as their family too.” 

The flight visited the L. Mendel Rivers and Navajo Elementary Schools, as well as homeschoolers, to put on a fun, interactive water tornado activity. The team was able to educate students on the dangers of disasters and what they can do in the event that one strikes. 

“The more we are prepared, the better we can recover from anything,” said Colbert. “We can’t stop a disaster, but we can recover faster if we’re prepared. Then we can keep the mission moving.” 

To learn more about how to be prepared for future disasters, follow this link to the inclement weather safety page: https://www.altus.af.mil/About-Us/Inclement-Weather-Safety/