The final article in our series ‘Identify what you need to put aside‘ is The Way Forward.
Obviously the items in this series comes to a lot of stuff to buy and it will not be cheap although for what it could mean it will be inexpensive. It may seem an insurmountable task to put this aside but it is not. You simply need to start doing it a bit at a time and only as much as you can afford.
I suggest you don’t go out and buy the first item on the list and work your way through like that. If an event happens while you are doing it you may find you have enough electricity generating capability to keep your little village going but no food or water. That would not be good.
First of all make sure you have your personal kit and your car kits sorted out. Then start on the rest of the list. The easiest way to make something manageable is to simply reduce it in size to something manageable and do that then revisit the rest. Put simply if I need 120 Lt Water and 120 protein bars then I simply reduce them to what I can afford. 20 Lt Water and 20 protein bars. I repeat this until I am finished. It may work out more expensive because buying protein bars in boxes of 50 may be a lot cheaper and you should be considering this in your calculations. You may decide to buy 25 Lt water one week followed by another 25 Lt and the next week 50 protein Bars. Juggle about to fit your needs and your pocket.
I prioritise things into the following;
- First Aid
- Water Production
- Food Production
- Medical Gear
You will note I split First Aid out from Medical Gear. The reason for that is some First Aid items are life savers on their own like a First Aid Manual, bleach, splints or bandages whilst others are only of use if you have reached a certain subsistence level. No point having bedpans or a bone saw when you cannot feed your patient or keep them warm.
If you go shopping weekly, add some water and food to your shopping list spending as much money as you can spare and put it aside in a cool dark place when you get home. Add it to your inventory sheet and date it. Do this until you have a three months food and water put aside. Then the next week instead of the extra food buy some water filtration equipment followed by seeds and plants for the garden, followed by some medicines, then clothing and then back to food and water until you have another two months supply of food and water. Then buy a solar panel, some cooking equipment or whatever you feel is of higher importance. As I write this we are entering the summer so winter clothing will be cheaper, try and take advantage of that. Continue building up your medicines, food and water one week whilst purchasing other items such as fuel, traps, water filtration equipment the next. Keep going until you have everything on the list. So if an event happens you may not have everything you want but you do have what you could afford. You will just have to make do and if you have done this correctly you will have enough of everything to last you several months. Every bit you have increases your chances of survival.
Then of course we start looking at extras but that is another series. However, some items on those lists last forever, some nearly, and you should consider purchasing extra for barter or treats in the future; Extra coffee, honey, seeds, bleach, traps, ammunition, propane, shoes, clothes, glasses, chickens, etc. will be worth the space, if you have space that is. I have marked some items on the spreadsheets which I think are worth having extra of and will last in storage for some time.
Finally, this is my list. You may disagree with some of the items on there and so you should remove them and replace them with something you prefer. For example; I like salmon so there are more tins of salmon than tuna. If you prefer tuna then simply swap the numbers over or replace with something else.
Now I’ve heard that you should never dip into your emergency stocks. I think that is wrong as you should actually be living off your stocks. As long as you replenish them as you go along what is the harm? You are keeping the stock rotated and fresh. What is the point of stocking for an event if all your stores are out of date before you start? Emergencies take many forms and paying your electricity or getting your car repaired may mean no money for food. What should you do starve because it is not a global event? I can see the news now ‘Family starves to death with 10 years supply of food in basement’. Dip into it as you need it and top it back up when you get some spare cash. It is not that complicated and funds are usually the issue for most of us.
Good luck and let us know of your views on these lists. Downloadable spreadsheets for the lists can be found on the checklists downloads page.
The Built Up Supplies list (Right click)
The Food list list (Right click)
The Medical list (Right click)