JBSA readies families during National Emergency Preparedness Month

  • Published
  • By Lori A. Bultman
  • 502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Joint Base San Antonio Military & Family Readiness Centers are celebrating Emergency Preparedness Month with a Community Preparedness and Ready event 9:30 a.m. to noon on Sept. 29, 2023, at the Military and Family Readiness Center at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, located at 3060 Stanley Road.

This year’s event is focused on getting families and the elderly more involved in emergency preparedness and informed about the services the Emergency Family Assistance Center, or EFAC, offers during emergency situations.

The program will spotlight five areas of preparedness and skill development with hands-on experiences:

  • Emergency Family Assistance Center overview
  • Emergency kit preparation
  • Fire extinguisher demonstration and activity
  • Introduction to CPR on adults and children
  • Safe reactions to active shooters

Sean M. Yoder, family readiness coordinator at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, said the objective of the event is to educate on the preparedness mindset and to help attendees become familiar with the Emergency Family Assistance Center’s purpose and mission. 

“We encourage service members and their families, including homeschoolers, to come learn key skills pertaining to various emergency scenarios as we try to bring on more mental capacity, through hands on experience and visuals,” he said.

“You can have a general idea of how to use a fire extinguisher, but when it really happens, all that goes away,” he said. “We want you to be prepared when the time comes. Whether it happens to yourself or someone else, it is important that we are ready and there for each other.”

​Yoder said that while the Emergency Management Office is overall lead for JBSA general preparedness related activities, the Force Support Squadron, who oversees the EFAC, serves as the lead coordinating agency specific to family preparedness.

The EFACs, which are located on JBSA-Lackland, -Fort Sam Houston, and -Randolph, may be activated by the joint base commander any time there are deployments, evacuations, local emergencies, or disaster situations, he said.

“During an actual emergency or crisis situation, the EFAC will provide a consolidated staging area at the M&FRC or another specified location where families can obtain disaster relief, current information, and immediate contingency services to assist them,” he said.

“This might include services from the chaplain, mental health, legal, financial services, family advocacy, and more,” he said. “We will be here to support our military families during any type of emergency or crisis situation.”