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#PreparetoProtect: September is National Preparedness Month

Photo Credit: fotosipsak/iStock Photo

September 2021 marks the 18th annual National Preparedness Month, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The Charlottesville-UVA- Albemarle Regional Office of Emergency Management Coordination encourages citizens to take action this month to become prepared for emergencies and disasters.

Steps for being prepared include creating an emergency kit, developing and practicing a family emergency plan, and becoming involved in local disaster volunteer groups.

Take these steps to #BeReady

If disaster strikes, you might not have access to food, water, or electricity for some time. Now is the time to create an emergency kit to hold you over for up to 72 hours after an emergency. Build an emergency kit for your home, vehicle, and workplace. When building an emergency kit, remember kids and seniors in your care and your pets. This is also a great time to remind yourself where and how to turn off your utilities (gas, water, and electricity). Visit to learn more on how to build an emergency kit.

Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes. Know what types of emergencies are likely in the Charlottesville/Albemarle area and the best way to respond. Discuss with your family and friends how you’ll contact each other, where you’ll meet, and what you’ll do in different situations. Complete a contact card for each family member and have them keep these cards handy in a wallet, purse, or backpack. Also, have all family members subscribe to the CodeRED Community Emergency Alert System at or by texting “BeAlert” to 99411.

National Preparedness Month is the time to get involved. The Charlottesville-UVA-Albemarle Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) will host a fall Level 1 training class starting in October. Sign up for this FREE online training to learn basic emergency actions to take care of yourself and others during an emergency.

For more information and to register for class visit