Tag Archives: Help

Be Prepared For Natural Disasters

Natural disasters can take place at any moment and can come in any form from floods, severe weather, earthquakes and more, yielding unfortunate outcomes without warning.  Being prepared can save lives and planning is important; know who will help you if you need assistance or if you need to evacuate.

Be Informed
Ensure you have the proper equipment to stay up-to-the-minute on breaking news and changing weather patterns. You may need a radio for this, specifically one that runs on batteries so be sure you have extras. Know when, where and what local branches of organizations like American Red Cross, have planned in your specific location, and find out how they can help. Also, ensure you can maintain contact with those outside of your home, having a phone car charger and jumper cables could be essential.

Make a Plan
For people with mobility challenges, assistance can be crucial.

If are a caregiver, or if you have assembled a “Help Team” to assist a person in need:

  • Be helpful in letting others know exactly what you need and when you need it.
  • Contact family, friends, neighbors or social service agencies if and when possible.
  • Try to have someone available who can lift and carry heavy objects such as wheelchairs or other medical equipment.
  • Give at least one other person a key to the person’s home.
  • Each team member should have the contact information for the others.
  • Name a substitute caregiver in case the original is unavailable.

Develop an evacuation strategy with your “Disaster Team,” and consider the following:

  • Where are the closest special needs emergency shelters and what are the different routes you can take to reach them?
  • What supplies must you take with you that are used every day?
  • Whom should you inform that you are evacuating?
  • How much gas do you have and how much will much will you need? Be sure to keep your vehicle’s gas tank over 1/2 full at all times.

Make a Kit
Assemble your kit well in advance with the help of a list and be sure to include:

  • Water – Keep one gallon of water per person (and per pet) per day for at least three days. Make sure you replace the water every six months.
  • Food – Keep at least a 3-day stock of non-perishable food that requires little cooking and no refrigeration in a safe place. Include a manual can opener and eating utensils.

For those with mobility disAbilities:

  • Pair of heavy gloves to use while wheeling or making your way over glass and debris
  • Extra battery for your motorized wheelchair or scooter
  • Jumper cables or specific recharging device to be connected to an automobile’s cigarette lighter
  • Patch kit or can of “seal-in-air product” to repair flat tires
  • Spare cane or walker
  • Food, medicine, favorite toy, and other care items for your service animal
  • Plastic bags, disposable gloves, and other items for the animal’s care

Find out if you qualify for assistance and fill out a form in advance to ensure your safety should the need arise. And be aware of FEMA resources in your area, including their capabilities and the best way to reach them.

August is National Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness Month

Since 1996, Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness Month has worked to increase awareness of this condition, hoping that a boost in the public’s knowledge about SMA will improve resources for research and provide better care for patients.

What can YOU do to help?
As with any cause, getting the message out to the public is the best way to help. Here are a few ways through which you can let your family, friends and colleagues know about SMA Awareness Month.

Host an Event
Whether it’s a picnic at the park or a fundraiser at your library, an event can help promote SMA Awareness Month to a large number of people. Look into posting your event on your community’s calendar, in order to attract an even larger turnout.

Display Promotional Materials
To help enhance awareness events, you can choose to make or purchase promotional materials containing information about SMA, organizations working to find a cure, and ways to donate. Some families and groups have come up with creative ways to display informational materials, like posting ribbons with SMA facts throughout their neighborhood!

Spread the Word
If you are asked questions regarding SMA or your efforts during awareness month (or anytime of the year!), take the opportunity to educate others about the disease. Share all the knowledge you can and instruct those around you on how they, too, can help.

While this may not be a possibility for us all, monetary contributions can directly go towards funding life-saving research and scientific efforts. Whenever possible, make a donation to support the battle against SMA.

The efforts of those involved in Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness Month can help advance the search for a treatment or cure for those living with the disease. However you choose to get involved, we urge you to support this cause.

Memorial Day Parade! Help Surprise Veterans!

Memorial Day Parade! Help Surprise The Veterans!

Memorial Day – Monday, May 25
At 10:00am in Athol, Massachusetts

“Please show your support to our veterans, the parade starts at Silver Lake cemetery, and they follow Crescent st ” the same road Staretts is on ” All the way down to the Veterans monument, across from the YMCA ” Next to the bus stop! We all have the day off from work/school, why not show your support? These men and women are more than deserving of it. The best part is, these veterans are not expecting this, they are in for a huge surprise!”

For more information please visit the Facebook Page

Tips to Help Overcome the Fear of Driving

Practice practice practice:

  • To boost your confidence, drive to the end of the block and back or around an empty parking lot, then gradually go for longer drives.
  • Ask someone to accompany you if that helps you relax.


  • Don’t start driving if you’re not calm and collected. Sit in the car and take deep breaths until you attain peace of mind and only then start the car and drive away.
  • Yoga classes may help you become a more focused, calm and less distracted driver.
  • If you get lost or experience panic, pull over until you calm down. Take as much time as you need. If you have a cell phone, call for directions.

Never get lost!

  • A Global Positioning System (GPS) may lessen the fear of getting lost.
  • No GPS? Print out the map directions from the Internet for those places you go frequently and keep them in the glove box.


Simple solutions to physical problems may help the mental and emotional pangs. For example, a spinner knob on the steering wheel allows accurate one-handed steering; hand controls replace feet for acceleration or braking—whatever the problem, there are solutions.

Occupational Therapists and Driver Rehabilitation Specialists can help. You can get a behind-the-wheel evaluation and recommendations for adaptive driving aids to help overcome many physical drawbacks. Whether the problem is muscle weakness, spasms or something else, therapists can address them.

Ability List

Their mission is to connect the 56 million Americans with disAbilities – as well as those who support them – with the disability resources, organizations, and activities available in their hometowns.

The Problem
Searching for disability resources can be a difficult and incomplete practice and often results in a lot of time spent for very little resources found. The resulting disconnect can lead to the unnecessary isolation of people with disabilities.

Why is this happening?
First of all, there are a lot of great organizations providing resources and services to people with disabilities, but all too often they lack the support necessary to make their offerings known to those who need them most. Furthermore, they often lack the channels to work together. This results in the need to spend many valuable hours searching through countless websites in order for people to find the resources they want and need.

How It Works
AbilityList is the aggregation of all disability resources in a hometown combined with the empowering of users to share what they know, which in turn builds a thriving community of people who are sharing and finding everything they need to fully unite and live full lives. It is comprised of:

A Complete and Accessible Directory
AbilityList provides users with a one-stop directory where they can easily find all of the available resources, organizations and programs available to them in their hometown. No more jumping from site to site. No more wasting time. Only the most relevant and valuable results.

Automatic Updates That Empower
Users can sign up for AbilityList’s simple subscriptions that will automatically funnel relevant updates and information directly to their email/account.

A Community That Shares
Our platform will help people find what they need, and more importantly, share the helpful resources they know of in their community. This will empower users to support each other and ensure that our platform stays relevant and always up to date.