Disaster/danger preparedness

Do any of you talk to or train your teens or leaders on natural disaster preparedness or what to do in an active shooter situation? If so, how do you do it in a way that is engaging and even fun instead of scaring them?


  • At first glance, this seems like an over the top type of question but if you take a few moments to reflect upon it, it is a really great question. Especially if you think more broadly such as road trips. Trips to conferences, mission trips, and World Youth Day.

    On a local level, your best best would be your local LEO such as the Sheriff's office. They normally have community liaisons that not only specialize in such issues but are also youth friendly.

  • If you have a school at your parish there is typically some type of natural disaster preparedness system in place. I know we had one for California because of Earthquakes. You might want to talk to some local catholic schools about their plans and make sure your Core Team knows where to take teens in a natural disaster and where emergency first aide kits, water, blankets, and food might be located. It is a good thing to do in case something happens. They are used to it because every school does this annually.

  • I agree with both Tricia and Jezreel. Core Team should know that information like the back of their hand so that in an emergency they can lead instead of look to you or the coordinator for directions. Moreover, local police and firefighters would be delighted to help lead trainings and drills. You can even prep them at the beginning of the year and say that it may occur sometime during the year and then do it, and debrief after the drill and discuss areas for improvement.

    Other things that we have learned from are to prepare for emergency medical situations: seizures, strokes, heart attacks, etc. In my five years in ministry, i've come across these kinds of emergencies at least once a year. It's good to be prepared and to have a plan in action. Even for liturgy we have plans for who can we rely on to make the call, where phones are located, etc...

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