Prepare to Be Desperate
Do more than cross your fingers.
January 16, 2010
Jamie Lee Curtis
The images tell it all. How can it be? Yet again, with the advent of technology we are there, intimate in the grief, desperation, hopelessness and deep frustration that in a time of great crisis we/you/they are alone, no aid for days. As the National Red Cross Spokesperson for their Do More Than Cross Your Fingers Campaign of Disaster Preparedness, I am well aware of the need for each person's self sufficiency in the moment of crisis. In the case of Haiti, the very infrastructure, however weak, to help in the time of need was itself crippled and crumbled. In this great time of global commitment stop for a second and ask yourself, have I done more than cross my fingers?
Photo: New Orleans residents send out a desperate plea for help on Sept. 1, 2005, as they waited to be rescue from the roof of an apartment complex. (Smiley N. Pool / Dallas Morning News)
A disaster will/could strike you and your family in your own communities. We watched Katrina. We watched how quickly anarchy and self preservation turned stunned and hungry, angry, hurting masses into mobs desperate for water, food, shelter, HELP. Trying to get aid for a sick or injured child. Are we prepared? Doubtful. I am not proselytizing about my mighty way or the highway, that I am some pillar of preparedness, just read my Christmas blog about losing power called Gridlocked out at Christmas. Yes, I am prepared here in my home in Los Angeles for a big, catastrophic earthquake but we all need to be. We cannot expect our government to help us individually in the first days after a crisis. The need is too much. Triage... Help the most needy. Rescuing where there is the greatest need. Chances are you, in your insular life will not be their priority so be your OWN. Go to the websites. Download the lists, basics, water, one gallon per PERSON per DAY and have at least a WEEKS supply. FLASHLIGHTS, FOOD, PRESCRIPTIONS, GLASSES, HEALTH DOCUMENTS, SHOES and CLOTHES and a CROWBAR to help open doors that are affected when the lintel's sag. Do more than cross your fingers.
I'm sure there were some disaster supplies in Haiti somewhere, but sadly, they were buried. We are going to need to rely on our neighbors and communities as the government agencies try to help the cities. We are all still wondering why it takes so long to get aid in, water, food. The basics. I don't know and I applaud all the efforts being made on behalf of the fallen and failing and fragile lives, hanging in the balance. Don't comment to this. Take that second to join one of the click and help agencies that HuffPost has provided, but then look at your home and start. You will sleep better tonight knowing that yes, you gave to the relief effort but much more importantly, that you created one for your own family and took the time today to put it in place.
Prepare to be helped by YOU.