Hey there! Hi there! Ho there! Are you prepared in the event of an emergency?
The Walt Disney Company and the American Red Cross are partnering this month to help children and their families prepare for emergencies. And what better time to do this than during the month of September, which is National Preparedness Month, a nationwide initiative to prepare yourself and those in your care for emergencies and disasters.
According to Red Cross president and CEO Gail McGovern, the agency has recognized that during disasters and emergencies “children have unique vulnerabilities and often require special attention.” The Red Cross has worked with the creative folks at Disney to develop the “Mickey and Friends Disaster Preparedness Activity Book,” which teaches kids and their families how to prepare for and respond to a wide range of disasters and emergencies through interactive games and activities.
Available for download in English and Spanish at http://disneydigitalbooks.go.com/redcross/9781423198451/, the book uses the classic Disney characters like Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy and Goofy to entertain and educate children about emergency preparedness through activities like word find, connect-the-dots, seek-and-find and through a series of coloring pages. Whether it is making an emergency preparedness kit with Mickey, working with Goofy on ways to stay safe during a thunderstorm, or helping Donald find fire hazards in the kitchen, the exercises are meant to entertain but more importantly educate children about dangers in the home, the potential for disasters and ways to prevent them and prepare for emergencies.
Each exercise in the 37-page booklet contains tips for parents on ways they can encourage their children to be prepared and how they can work as a family to make plans in the event of an emergency. At the end of the booklet, once the your family has mastered the activities, there is a congratulatory certificate from Disney and the Red Cross which can be printed and displayed prominently on your refrigerator door alerting everyone to your being prepared in the event of an emergency.
Disney will also use its ongoing “Friends for Change” initiative on its website to instruct children and their families to “prepare for the unexpected.” The campaign will also encourage families to get an emergency preparedness kit, make a plan and be informed. The spot will feature Disney Channel star and “Friends for Change” Ambassador Debby Ryan.
The House of the Mouse will also donate Mickey Mouse plush dolls to be used for kids during disaster-relief operations and hundreds of hours of volunteer service through its Disney VoluntEARS program.