Outreach and Public Safety Committees can partner up to create disaster preparedness kits branded with your Neighborhood Council’s logo or name. Read on for tips and ideas on how to plan your kits, and what to put in them.
To kick off your project, it’s helpful to have at least one joint meeting of the Public Safety and Outreach Committees, so you’ll be able to plan how the kits will be made and used in an outreach campaign, and present that information to your board.
Make sure to also include discussion of how and where the kits will be made, as assembling 500 – 2000 kits will require a team and some space to spread out in. You’ll need at least two months to discuss the project; get it approved; and order any custom logo items.
What To Put In The Kit
City of LA’s Emergency Management Department has created a great checklist for what they call a Go Bag, or individual emergency kit. See their list on pages 19-20 of their Comprehensive Guide to Family and Home Preparedness.
While some of the items on EMD’s Go Bag checklist are things people must pack for themselves, like a change of clothing, there are plenty of items on that list that may be bought in bulk and put in a bag with your Council’s name and logo on it, such as a small flashlight with batteries, local map, whistle, bandages, toothbrush, toothpaste, keychain for extra keys, or dust mask.
With the exception of the dust mask, all of these things – even the bandages – are items you can get customized with your Council’s logo. While customizing every item is not cost-effective, you can select one or two things to put your logo on to increase the branding value of your kits. To find promotional items, use search terms like, “custom logo bandages” or “promotional toothbrush.” One word of caution: though pocket knives appear on EMD’s Go Bag list and custom utility knives are a popular promotional product, avoid including knives in your kit, to avoid potential liability issues. A great substitute is a tool to turn off gas in an earthquake, as was provided in this nice emergency kit from Sherman Oaks NC (photo via SONC Facebook page):
Reusable bags with your logo can be purchased very inexpensively. Prices start at less than $1 for a simple drawstring backpack and go up for more rugged choices. Make sure that whatever bag you choose has handles and closes securely.
TIP: look for wholesale purchasing options to get volume discounts when buying items for your kits
Besides the emergency supplies, be sure to include a flyer, letter, or brochure introducing your Council, and listing your meeting times, days, and locations.
Outreach Tip Of The Week is an ongoing series on using communications, branding, marketing, and public relations to build better relationships with your stakeholders. Send your outreach questions to firstname.lastname@example.org for the chance to be featured in a future Outreach Tip article.