This article was originally published on The Survival Mom blog.
Although it is important to be prepared for disaster situations, many are not adequately trained to handle the disaster situations in which they find themselves in. Having the proper skills and training will provide an individual with a well diversified knowledge base on how to survive during and after a disaster.
In a survival situation, medical training is going to be a big one. Due to the increase use of saws, axes and knives, there will be more medical emergencies involving deep lacerated cuts. Knowing how to properly clean wounds, stitch wounds, as well as knowing how to treat infected wounds will be extremely important. Additionally, there will be an increase in burns from being in closer contact to fires. Burns can get infected very quickly, and knowing how to decipher the degree of the burn is and how to treat it will be a concern amongst survivalists and preppers. Typically, there are online courses offered for basic CPR/First Aid, however, those basic skills will not give a person the fundamental training they need. Finding a local Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) class that is offered for paramedics and first responders to accidents will be a better knowledge source and better equip a person to handle emergency medical situations.
Disaster training is typically offered by FEMA, the American Red Cross and other disaster organizations. A person who is equipped with knowledge on how to plan for a disaster, how to properly prepare for a disaster, and how to mental handle the after effects of a disaster will be able to better adapt to the situation more quickly compared to those that are not. The American Red Cross offers extensive courses in disaster safety and training as well as basic First Aid/CPR courses. There are also online courses offered through FEMA.
In a long term survival situation, seeds will mean the difference between life and death. The only problem is, many have lost the necessary skill of gardening because there is a grocery store on every corner of the streets these days. It’s time to get your hands dirty and get back in touch with nature. Learning necessary gardening skills such as companion plants, crop rotations, beneficial insects, natural ways to replenish soil, and knowledge on proper gardening tools will be beneficial. Another relevant knowledge source is understanding the medicinal value of plants and herbs. It is amazing how many uses there are for plants besides spicing up our cooked entrees. Researching natural medicines is another major need in a survival situation, especially if the person has a pre-existing condition.
There are dozens of firearm courses offered through the National Rifle Association. In a situation where a person needs to defend themselves, 99% of them would want a gun. And, the more a person practices, the better their aim gets. This is one survival skill that a person should be as proficient as possible. Also, practicing gun safety, especially around children, as well as being able to educate others is essential when a firearm is around.
Canning and Food Preparation
Knowing how to can and preserve foods to eat during the long winter months is essential. Just think of all the delicious jarred goods a person can store up for when their food supply dwindles in the winter. The canning jars can be a bit of an investment. However, this author has found people selling their canned jars on www.craigslist.com, garage sales and even at second hand stores. Canning jars would also make an excellent bartering item.
Amateur Radio Classes
Having a radio is encouraged by many disaster relief organizations. And having knowledge on how to work and maneuver a HAMM radio will provide a person with an emergency communication source during a time when most communication is down. The National Association of Amateur Radio provides information based on a person’s location and course information on their website.
Typically if there is a fabric store, there are sewing classes and sewing events that are offered at the store. Everyone has heard of how their great grandmothers would sew quilts out of material from tethered or worn clothing. Not many of us have this skill anymore. Sewing classes will not only teach a necessary skill, but it will also get the survival mindset in place: make something new out of what you have available.
Outdoor Survival Skills Courses
Most preppers and survivalists are planning to “re-connect” with nature. Learning the necessary outdoor skills will provide a person with fundamental knowledge on how to better survive. The Boy Scouts offer adult classes as well as some community colleges. Get creative and search around the internet. There are some survival courses offered online (some offer free survival courses) that a person can learn from the comfort of their home. There are also wilderness courses offered at a variety of facilities such as local colleges, the YMCA, community park and recreation facilities, etc. Additionally, finding books, and e-books on survival skills is another way to find information on this topic.
Candle/Soap making Conventions
Soap and candle making are a lost art form in my opinion. Having a background knowledge of these skills would also be a great bartering skill. There are classes a person can take that are usually offered at homes as well as some conventions in certain areas. Searching on the Internet would be a great start for finding these classes.
As many are planning to hunt wild game for a food source, they will need skills on how to gut the carcass, skin the fur and properly cut the meat. The “hunter-in-training” will also have to have a proficient knowledge on the different types of hunting tools used to prepare animal carcasses (and these tools come in different sizes based on the animal). The National Hunting Association is a portal that can take a person to their local area hunting association in order to get more information for their specific area. Also, this website offers the hunting guides for all of the states within the USA.