Once again, I’m proud to be a Texan.
Hurricane Ike came ashore and created one of the worst disasters in our state’s history. We still don’t know the full extent of this natural disaster. My prayers are with all those who lost their homes, and with the millions who have to live without electricity or gasoline.
What’s to be proud of? More and more Texans have learned the importance of having an emergency plan. Yes, thousands of people didn’t evacuate like they should have (is that really a surprise?) but I’ve personally been in contact with several friends from Houston who had their emergency contact information in place, their important docs bag and their emergency supplies. People are checking on neighbors and strangers and working together to clear debris.
EnviroMedia spent a good part of the last year helping the Texas Department of State Health Services spread those messages across Texas through outreach at Wal-Mart and H-E-B stores, advertising, web site and partnerships with groups like Red Cross and Meals on Wheels. The campaign, “Ready or Not? Have a plan.” really worked to reduce problems with this natural disaster. Research told us many people don’t think about all these important issues until it’s too late. We’re slowly making a dent here.
We all owe a debt of gratitude to all of the local, state and federal employees and volunteers who have been, and will continue to work around the clock on the response to Ike.