One Year to Be Prepared: Month 4 Checklist

Each month during 2023, the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians Emergency Management team will provide you a checklist for assembling emergency supplies and help you and your family think though various emergency scenarios. The monthly checklists will also prompt you to consider special circumstances, such as supplies for pets, elders, evacuation routes, and sanitation.

(For the complete list of One Year to be Prepared lists, click here)


When building a two-week (at least) supply of nonperishable foods, include canned, dried, freeze-dried, dehydrated, and shelf-stable selections, while considering your family’s needs and tastes. You may be without power or water for up to a month in a real emergency.

Suggested food items

  • Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, and vegetables
  • Canned juices, milk, and soup (if powdered, store extra water)
  • Staples (sugar, salt, oil, spices, etc.)
  • High-energy food (peanut butter, jam, crackers, granola bars, trail mix, etc.
  • Foods for those with special dietary needs (infant, elderly, diabetic, etc.)
  • Comfort food (cookies, candy, cereal, instant coffee, tea, etc.)

Gardening and seed storage

You can only store so much food. Consider learning how to garden by taking classes in your community or from friends, family, or a neighbor.

You can order vegetable and fruit seeds that can be stored for years. Buy heirloom seeds so you can harvest seeds from the crop. Hybrid seeds will not reproduce, preventing you from collecting seeds from the crop for the next planting season.

Food storage tips

  • Keep food covered at all times in a cool, dry place
  • Open food boxes carefully and close them tightly after each use
  • Seal cookies and crackers in plastic bags to preserve freshness
  • To protect against pests, empty opened packages of sugar, dried fruit, or nuts into screw-top, airtight containers
  • Use foods before they expire, and replace them with fresh supplies by rotating your stock regularly

Maintain your strength

  • Eat at least one well-balanced meal a day
  • Drink plenty of water so your body can function
  • Include lots of protein
  • Take in enough calories to do any needed work
  • Take vitamin supplements to ensure adequate nutrition


  • Make a plan for how you will stay safe, warm, and fed if you are stuck at home without any services. How will you heat your home? How will you cook? What sorts of supplies do you need to be successful?

Train or be trained

  • Learn to start a fire in several ways.
  • Learn how to boil water (for food, drinking, or sanitation) if you did not have a stove.
  • Learn what fuels you need on hand for fire-starting (matches, Vaseline and cotton balls, etc.).
  • If you have a propane barbecue, make sure everyone in your household knows how to replace an empty tank.

Supplies – Gather or Purchase

  • Add another three days of water, and three days worth of freeze-dried foods to your supplies. Include sprout-able beans and seeds: they are shelf-stable, are a good source of vitamins, sprout within three days, and add variety and flavor to your meals.