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Make a Meaningful Difference in Your Family’s Life By Being Prepared!

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Summer of Service, Preparation, Emergency Preparedness, Family, Parenting Make a meaningful difference this summer by taking the Summer of Service (SOS) Challenge. This week's topic is all about being prepared. Here's how you can participate:

  • Commit to do one act of kindness/service based on the week's challenge.
  • Leave a comment with ideas relating to the week's challenge as well as your experience(s) performing it.
  • Grab the SOS button in the sidebar and put it on your blog or social networking site.
  • Enter to win each week's giveaway. Check out this week's giveaway by clicking here.
  • Join #gno this Tuesday here on Twitter to connect with other Mom It Forward moms about the challenge.

10 Ways to Make a Difference This Week

Here are 10 ideas to help you Be Prepared that will make a meaningful difference in your and your family's life in the event of a disaster, emergency, or job loss! The wonderful thing about being prepared is that it puts you in a much better position to give back to others.

1. Data: Back up your computer data, including pictures, important documents, and e-mails. Ensure your anti-virus software is up to date. Click here to enter this week's giveaway sponsored by Mozy to win online backup.
2. Food: Start building a food supply by adding a few storable items to your pantry, including water, that you typically eat. For example, if you see peanut butter on sale, instead of buying one tub, buy two.
3. Money: Live within your income and start or add to your savings account. Model this behavior to your children this week by helping them create the equivalent of three piggy banks entitled: "For Now," "For Later," and "For Others."
4. Mozy, Online Backup, Virus Attacks, Computer Data Insurance: Prepare for the future by having sufficient medical, auto, homeowner's, renter's, and life insurance. This week, review your policies to ensure they cover your needs. Make changes where necessary.
5. Investments: Put aside some money for long-term needs, like education and retirement. If you are not in a position right now to invest, this week create an investment plan and contribute to it as soon as you are able.
6. Emergency Disaster Preparation: Stay up to date on current situations and plan ahead for potential disasters. Visit these websites this week to learn more and to prepare: http://www.ready.gov, http://www.fema.gov, http://www.redcross.org, http://osha.gov. And, since we cannot be assured that we will know where family members will be when a disaster strikes, take time this week to create a communication plan to prepare for this. Download, print, and make a plan by clicking here.
7. Health: Prevention is the best preparation. So, make sure your family is up to date on annual physicals, dental exams, immunizations, and other appointments. Also, make sure you have items on hand in case of emergency, such as a 72-hour kit for each family member and a first-aid kit.
8. Important Documents: Create a water-proof and if possible, fire-proof, place to contain your most important documents, such as marriage and birth certificates, social security cards, passports, copies of your drivers licenses and credit cards, etc.
9. Employment: Identify what you can do to this week to increase your marketability. Start small by reviewing and updating your resume. Identify areas in which you could improve and make a plan to gain skills or knowledge in those areas. Since the highest percentage of jobs are obtained through word of mouth, identify ways in which to increase your network. You never know when you will need to tap in to those resources.
10. Self-Sufficiency: One of the best ways to prepare for the future is to become self-reliant. The more we can do for ourselves, the more we are able to provide for our families as well as help others. Start small by choosing areas that are of interest to you. Some examples include: planting a garden, sewing your own clothes and crafts, canning your own food, etc.

How Will You Be Prepared This Week?
Please share with us:

  • What other ideas do you have for being prepared?
  • How being prepared has made a meaningful difference for you and your family this week?

This week's SOS Challenge is sponsored by Mozy.

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.

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