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July 2008 Themes for Community Outreach

July 4, 2008: Independence Day

With citizens heading out to backyard barbecues and pool parties for 4th of July celebrations, share the message of fireworks and water safety this year with your community. The National Council on Fireworks Safety provides tips for safely enjoying fireworks displays. To spread the word, you might want to ask your local television station to conduct an interview with a firefighter on your Citizen Corps Council to share this information. Additionally, consider distributing fireworks safety information at celebrations around the community. Have CERT members and other Citizen Corps participants help with organizing and participating in 4th of July parades – consider having a Citizen Corps float and be sure to hand out preparedness information along the parade route!

July 26, 2008: Anniversary of the Signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Many people with disabilities are at greater risk during an emergency. Use this anniversary as an opportunity to organize activities specifically to ensure that people in your community with disabilities are prepared with disaster supply kits, a family communication plan, working smoke detectors, and a way to be connected to others to help them during an incident.

And use this day to highlight examples of how people with disabilities can participate in Citizen Corps training and volunteer programs – include a recruitment drive specifically for people with disabilities. Invite local leaders, disabled members of your community, and other citizens to participate in a roundtable discussion about what steps can be taken to address the needs of this segment of your community. Invite local members of the media to participate.

July 26, 2008: Parents' Day

Have a Citizen Corps volunteer speak at a PTA meeting to talk about roles parents and their children can play in keeping the home and the community safe. Invite local media to participate. Organize family oriented volunteer opportunities. Honor and acknowledge parents in the community who have focused on educating and training their family on preparedness and response skills. For more ideas on how to celebrate visit National Parents' Day Council website.

Summer Thunderstorms

In many areas, the summer months are particularly prone to thunderstorms. Encourage your community to practice safe habits during violent weather. Hold an event at a local municipal pool, grocery store, or hardware store to educate the public on ways to safely "weather the storm." Distribute flashlights, bottled water and flyers with tips and local emergency numbers. Have trained Citizen Corps volunteers – as well as your local television weatherman – on hand to answer questions.

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