What items couldn't you live without? That's the challenge from the #cyblessings calendar today, presented in the context of preparing for and responding to natural disasters.
Christian Aid works with partners in areas prone to natural disasters, not just to meet emergency needs but to engage in long-term planning for disaster risk reduction. The Humanitarian Practice Network has an interesting article about Christian Aid and Disaster Risk Reduction. It's dated 2007 but I think the points it makes are still relevant.
Suppose you lost your possessions in a hurricane or tsunami?
What things would you miss most? I don't count people as 'things' - loss of people would be the greatest loss. The question today is about what things you couldn't live without. Christian Aid suggests giving 10p for every one of those items. Trying to make a list has confronted me with how many things I have that I might miss greatly but actually could live without. The question goes back to basics: what are the absolute essentials for survival?
Here's 10 things I think essential in extreme circumstances:
- water - a source and a container for water
- water purification tablets
- shelter (from sun, cold, rain etc.) or the means to construct one
- emergency food supply or the means to gather, hunt or grow it
- cooking pot and means to make fire
- survival blanket
- my Swiss multi-tool kit which includes a sharp knife
- comprehensive 1st Aid Kit with instructions in large print (so I don't need reading glasses)
- signalling devise (in hope of rescue) e.g. large torch with wind-up rechargeable batteries and flashing facility, whistle (I'm assuming a mobile phone would be useless)
And another 10 things I'd need
I'd want to be wearing layers of practical all-weather outdoor clothes and my strong comfortable walking boots. Those would be essential too - that could be another 10 things, so that's 20 altogether, so £2 to set aside today for Christian Aid.
What would your list contain?