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National Preparedness

Every day, we take steps to help people and communities to be more prepared by developing the capabilities needed to prevent, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against all threats and hazards. Whether we face risks related to earthquakes, cyberattacks or chemical spills, our goal is shared: safety and resilience.

Presidential Policy Directive-8

Experience tells us that when the whole community comes together to tackle a challenge—and everyone plays a role—the end result is more effective. Everyone—not just the government—needs to be involved in a systematic effort to keep the nation safe from harm and resilient when struck by hazards like natural disasters, acts of terrorism and pandemics.

Presidential Policy Directive / PPD-8: National Preparedness recognizes that preparedness is a shared responsibility. It calls on federal departments and agencies to work with the whole community around six elements:


The common goal is a secure and resilient nation. We define a series of national preparedness elements that are needed to achieve this goal.

National Preparedness Goal


We outline an organized approach for the whole community and provide resources and tools for achieving the goal.

National Preparedness System


We define how we will work together to best meet needs in each of the five mission areas: Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response and Recovery.

National Planning Frameworks

Annual Report

We evaluate annual preparedness progress and challenges facing the whole community.

National Preparedness Report

Federal Plans

We describe how federal efforts can work together to support state and local plans — the federal government’s concept of operations for each of the five mission areas.

Federal Interagency Operational Plans

Build and Sustain Preparedness

We continue ongoing efforts for:

  • Public outreach, community-based and private sector programs
  • Federal preparedness
  • Grants, technical assistance and other federal preparedness support
  • Research and development

National Preparedness Reports

The 2020 National Preparedness Report provides an overview of the risks that communities face, how vulnerabilities present in those communities drive those risks, and how risk management principles can be employed to manage those risks. This report is based on data available as of December 31, 2019. The report describes the capabilities needed to manage those risks and how close communities are to meeting target goals. Finally, the report highlights four critical considerations that underscore the complexity of managing the Nation’s risks and that offer a path forward for emergency management across the Nation.


PrepTalks are given by subject-matter experts and thought leaders to spread new ideas, spark conversation and promote innovative leadership for the issues confronting emergency managers.

PrepTalks New perpectives for emrgencu managers

Preparedness Toolkit

PrepToolkit is an online collaborative environment in which individuals from all levels of government and the private and nonprofit sectors can prepare for risks in their communities. It provides an avenue to execute preparedness activities efficiently and easily and to share this work with others.

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PrepToolkit provides emergency management professionals the tools to implement the National Preparedness System and embodies FEMA’s mission: Helping people before, during and after disasters. 

Preparedness Grant Case Studies

FEMA conducts grant effectiveness case studies to demonstrate how states and urban areas across the country use a mix of homeland security non-disaster grant programs to improve preparedness. FEMA chose case study locations to ensure geographic diversity and to link grant investments with recent events.

Browse Preparedness Grant Case Studies