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Step 2 - Get connected

Being connected to your community means you can help each other in an emergency and, if you need it, in the long recovery journey afterwards.

Step 2: Get connected

People who receive positive support from their community (i.e. family members, friends, co-workers, neighbours) after an emergency tend to recover better than those who don't.

Being connected can help when disasters strike

  • It's most likely to be your neighbour or a passer-by, not emergency services, who will help you to survive during an emergency
  • Your friends, family and neighbours will probably be the ones who provide most of the general, practical and emotional support you'll need before and after an emergency.
  • Your community networks will most likely provide you with the information you need to know about recovery services and activities relevant to you after an emergency.


Think about your existing connections.

  • Who do you consider to be in your community? Who do you already know? A community is more than the geographic area you live in. It may also include others who share something in common with you, such as language, culture, religion, interest or hobby.
  • Think about who's missing from your network. If you feel like you're not part of a community or could benefit from expanding your existing network, think about how you might do this.
  • Think about those around you. Some people will need more help than others in an emergency-help you can provide.


Identify a personal support network

A personal support network sounds great at any time, but having one is essential during and after an emergency.

A personal support network should include people who can help you get the resources you'll need. They should be available to check in on you regularly and help you when required.

Your network could be your immediate family, your neighbours, a group of friends, more formalised support service staff, such as carers, or any combination of these.

Once you've identified your network:

  • Ask them to help you plan for an emergency using the helpful template in Red Cross RediPlan.
  • Talk through your plan with your network and provide copies. Make sure everyone understands what to do in an emergency.
  • Show your network your personal assessment worksheet or ask them to work through it with you so they understand what they might need to help you with.
  • Become part of a support network for someone you know.


Are you connected?

  • Start some conversations about emergencies with people you know: your local school or childcare facility, your children's local sporting group, your parents, a hobby group, or any of the groups or networks of people you consider to be a part of your community. You might even talk about what the group can do to help prepare others in your community.
  • Arrange to have emergency services workers talk to a group you belong to about how to prepare for an emergency. All agencies run sessions, usually for free. Contact Red Cross in your state or territory if you'd like to hear from a trained Red Cross presenter.
  • Join an emergency or community service organisation. Red Cross has emergency services teams across the country. These teams help people with a range of services including helping people to prepare for emergencies and responding to people's needs during and after an emergency. Find our more about volunteering for Australian Red Cross.

Get connected. Get Red Cross RediPlan.

Red Cross Rediplan is a free guide packed with helpful hints and clever strategies on how to prepare for disasters and make your emergency plan.

Download RediPlan

Now help your friends and family prepare too

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More information about getting prepared for disasters

Step 3: Get Organised

Learn how to get organised - the third step in getting prepared for a disaster.

Get ready for anything. Get Red Cross RediPlan.

Create your emergency plan in four simple steps. Download your free disaster preparedness guide now.

Step 3: Get organised