FEMA launches 2012 version of preparedness effort

WASHINGTON: The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has launched the Resolve to be Ready in 2012 campaign, which urges Americans to make a new year's resolution to prepare for disasters.

WASHINGTON: The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has launched the Resolve to be Ready in 2012 campaign, which urges Americans to make a new year's resolution to prepare for disasters.

The government agency is reaching out to print, radio, and TV general interest media, and is using social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, and a blog to raise awareness of the initiative.

“The main challenge for the overall Ready Campaign is getting people to actually make a committed effort to prepare for emergencies by taking those simple preparedness steps,” said Rachel Racusen, director of public affairs at FEMA. “However, this campaign is also a continuous opportunity to educate Americans about the ways they can protect themselves and their loves ones by staying informed, building a kit, making a plan, and getting involved.”  

FEMA has teamed up with Citizen Corps and The Advertising Council to get the campaign off the ground.

In 2011, the US experienced its first hurricane landfall since 2008 and its most deadly series of tornadoes since the 1950s, as well as significant earthquakes and severe flooding, according to a recent report by the National Climatic Data Center.

FEMA will measure several key metrics to evaluate the effectiveness of its outreach efforts, including estimated donated media value and impressions, Web traffic, and brochure downloads or orders, said Racusen.

The agency has conducted the initiative, which will continue into the first few weeks of 2012, annually since 2003. Since its launch, the effort has generated more than $900 million in estimated donated media support and has exceeded 12 billion media impressions, according to FEMA. The agency declined to disclose the campaign's budget.

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