• "There are just a few of us, but we are all important": responses to a disaster preparedness survey in Interior Alaska river villages

      Jackson, Celia (2015-05)
      This survey explores individual perspectives about disaster preparedness in Interior Alaska villages. The results will be used to create a new, locally relevant preparedness outreach flyer for distribution across the Interior Alaska region. Modern Red Cross preparedness fliers use the "Be Red Cross Ready: Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed," flyer to educate people on useful preparedness behavior. This is also the standard across the United States used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other government agencies. But is the information contained within the "Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed" flyer really applicable to life in small, remote, Alaskan communities? Many of these communities are highly isolated according to the standards applied to the rest of the country: they experience often-extreme environmental conditions, and are composed of indigenous people who have their own worldview and concept of risk and community values. In order to effectively prepare people in villages for disasters, everything must be reconsidered to fit this Alaskan setting. Key findings from this survey project include: the importance of outdoor survival gear and cold-weather gear in emergency kits; the need for more written small community emergency plans; and the need for cultural competency training for disaster response professionals and volunteers.