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Region II: National Preparedness Division

The National Preparedness Division provide the doctrine, programs, and resources to prepare the Nation to prevent, protect, mitigate, respond to, and recover from disasters while minimizing the loss of lives, infrastructure, and property.and the resources and support it provides.

People lookng at preparedness material at an outdoor event.

What We Do

The National Preparedness Division is responsible for the coordination and development of the capabilities and tools necessary to prepare for all hazards among all levels of government, the private sector, non-governmental organizations and communities.

Preparedness is a shared responsibility; it calls for the involvement of everyone—not just the government—in preparedness efforts. By working together, everyone can keep the nation safe from harm and resilient when struck by hazards, such as natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and pandemics.

In active collaboration with our full range of partners and stakeholders in the private sector, the non-governmental & volunteer sector, and all levels of the public sector (states, territories, tribes, counties, municipalities):

  • To build a culture of individual and community preparedness;
  • To integrate existing partner & stakeholder emergency management plans to facilitate comprehensive, multi-jurisdictional Regional planning;
  • To assess current Regional risks and capabilities to prioritize any consequent capability shortfalls; and
  • To align priorities within the Region to effectively steward grant programs, trust building and test additional prioritized capabilities.

Individual and Community Preparedness Activities

America’s PrepareAthon! is an opportunity for individuals, organizations, and communities to prepare for specific hazards through group discussions, drills, and exercises. The goal of this campaign is to increase the number of individuals who:

  • Understand which disasters could happen in their community

  • Know what to do to be safe and mitigate damage

  • Take action to increase their preparedness

  • Participate in community resilience planning

A key element to successfully responding to and recovering from a major disaster is the overall preparedness of individual citizens and their families. With that in mind, FEMA invites you to participate in a series of ‘What would you do?’ scenarios with your loved ones in order to assess your level of preparedness.

Download ICP activities now and learn how to discuss steps to improve your safety in the event such a tragedy occurs. Material is also available in Spanish (Español).

Additional information about America’s PrepareAthon is available on

Region II Youth Preparedness Council

FEMA's Region II Youth Preparedness Council (YPC) was created to bring young people together to support disaster preparedness and make a difference in their communities by completing disaster preparedness projects on a local level. Interested individuals ages 14-17 who want to make a difference in their community, who have engaged in individual or community preparedness or may have lived through a disaster and want to share their experiences should apply.

Access the YPC Application Form here.

If you have any questions please email:

Individual and Community Preparedness Webinars

The following provides access to previously recorded webinars that focus on topics impacting individual and community preparedness. These sesions are a collaborative effort between FEMA Region II Preparedness and the FEMA Individual and Community Preparedness Division. 


Join this deep-dive session to learn strategies on how to address psychological stress in yourself, coworkers, or general public during the course of your emergency response. 

What is “trauma” from a psychological standpoint? Find out the answer to this question and how crises effect individuals. Webinar attendees will gain a better understanding of how to recognize signs of stress in coworkers, the general public, or themselves; and develop approaches on how to effectively manage them.

Learn about the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJOHSP) Suspicious Activity Reporting System (NJSARS) and how they define suspicious activity, show how law enforcement and the public can identify suspicious behavior and discuss the best way to report that information. Participants will also learn about the indicators used to classify leads, how information is routed through NJSARS and more. David Kanig, NJOHSP, is the featured speaker.  

Learn how houses of worship can enhance emergency preparedness capabilities using The Active Shooter Exercise Toolkit, a resource that supports safety and security committee members, interfaith preparedness organizations and/or local first responder agencies. Through a variety of materials, houses of worship can learn how to conduct their own tabletop exercise with little or no previous exercise experience.
Learn how IRS-sponsored programs can provide underserved communities with free tax filing assistance using IRS certified volunteers. Programs such as Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly can make a difference in helping more Americans become financially prepared. Amelia Dalton from the Stakeholder Partnerships, Education and Communications Unit, Internal Revenue Service leads the discussion. 
This webinar features a subject matter expert from Homeland Security Investigations tasked with investigating and dismantling human tracking efforts throughout the country. Human trafficking is a hidden crime and it can happen in any community; victims can be of any age, race, gender or nationality. The first step to fighting the battle is to identify victims so they can be rescued and help bring offenders to justice. Education and awareness is the route to a safer community.


Listen to local and national speakers from Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) teams. MRC is a national network of volunteers including medical and public health professionals, organized locally to improve the health and safety of their communities in blue skies and disasters. Betty Duggan of the New York City MRC will discuss community efforts around pandemics like the flu and Kristen Lepore of the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services will show how municipalities utilize their MRCs and talk about future goals of the program.  

The Active Shooter on Campus

This webinar features Lt. Paul Giardino who delivers a presentation on active shooter scenario safety and lessons learned for institutes of higher learning. The discussion covers how individuals should keep themselves safe in an active shooter scenario, what higher education organizations should have in their emergency operations plans, considerations for those who have access and functional needs, and how to recognize and report signs of potential terrorism. Lt. Giardino also discusses lessons learned in response and planning from previous incidents.

Held every October, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is a collaborative effort to raise awareness about the importance of cybersecurity and to ensure everyone has the resources needed to engage in online activity in a safe and secure environment. Learn about personal accountability and the importance of being proactive in enhancing cybersecurity at home and in the workplace. Focus areas include: citizen privacy, consumer devices, and ecommerce security. This webinar features Region II Cyber Security Advisor Rich Richards.

National Preparedness Month is held every September to promote the way families and communities engage in disaster and emergency planning. One of this year's themes was “Teach Youth to Prepare for Disasters.” This webinar includes discussion on how Youth Preparedness Councils (YPCs) can have an impact on improving community resilience and how new emergency and disaster readiness tools and programs geared toward kids are now available online. 

The webinar featured FEMA Youth Preparedness Lead Tyler Krska, FEMA National Advisor on Children and Disasters Lauralee Koziol and Region II National YPC member Katerina Corr.

Libraries and Non-Traditional Facilities in Emergencies

Learn about the role non-traditional facilities like libraries and senior centers play in emergencies. Public facilities of this type can be powerful resources during disasters and emergencies.

Topics discusssed in this webinar include how New Jersey integrated their library system into the state emergency disaster plan and how New York City leveraged its public facilities to develop a cooling center network. Speakers include representatives from the New Jersey State Library, New York City Emergency Management and the Bureau of Emergency Preparedness at the New York City Department for the Aging.

This webinar featured Chief Joseph Meyers, head of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) Explosives Unit. The presentation covered how the FDNY and partners oversee safety and logistics on large public firework events like the Macy's 4th of July Fireworks® through emergency planning and cross-governmental collaboration.

This webinar featured Carolyn Kousky, PhD, Wharton Risk Center, Tony Hake, Director of Risk Insurance Division, FEMA, and Brian Kempf, Secretary and Legislative Committee Chair of the New Jersey Association for Floodplain Management.

The presentation covered the important role of flood insurance in families and communities recovering from disasters, the consequences of not being insured for homeowners and businesses, the outlook of private flood insurance, upcoming changes to the National Flood Insurance Program risk and rating policies, and finally, the FEMA Community Rating System and how this makes communities safer while providing discounts to NFIP flood policyholders.

Due to technical issues, this recording does not have sound. Closed captioning is included on the recording and the full transcript is available for download.

FEMA Region II Hurricane Program Manager Chris Moore leads the conversation on topics such as tropical cyclone climatology, hurricane hazards and information sources to help individuals and communities prepare for the 2019 hurricane season.


Webinar: 2-1-1: The Community Resource Hub Before, During and After Disasters

Learn about how 2-1-1 can be a community resource to support every day needs and times of crisis. Kelly Dodd, director of Western New York’s 2-1-1 and Melissa Acree, executive director, New Jersey 2-1-1 Partnership presented on how the service connects community members to resources and how it operates during the response and recovery phases of a disaster. Participants learned how to better connect with 2-1-1 before an event and how it can make their communities more resilient. 
Learn about the importance of psychological preparedness for emergencies and some of the internal factors that influence people to prepare.  This webinar features Ingrid Perez, Planning Specialist in the Capacity Building Sector’s Continuity of Operations Unit at the FEMA Caribbean Area Division. 
This presentation primarily focuses on why some individuals are more proactive than others when preparing for emergencies and also provides general recommendations to support psychological preparedness.

The Flu: What to do?

Flu causes outbreaks every year (“seasonal” flu) and pandemics (global epidemics) a few times a centuryDespite all of our experience and scientific knowledge and developments with the virus, the flu remains unpredictable and preparing for it is challenging.


This webinar features speaker Dr. Stephen Morse, Professor of Epidemiology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and Chair of the Columbia University Institutional Biosafety Committee.

Planning Your Financial Future

This webinar discusses the typical roadblocks to saving money, how to deal with them, techniques to improve your savings practices, reduce debt, and the importance of investing. Note:This training not provide specific financial or investment advice.



Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

The Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services delivered a presentation on its requirements and waivers for healthcare facilities during an emergency. The material was presented at a Ready Seniors workshop in Rochester, New York.


The number of vehicular attacks have increased over the past few years. As attacks of this type can be easily executed it is becoming more challenging for law enforcement and emergency management officials to identify early on. This webinar features speaker Steven Crimando, Director of Training for the Disaster & Terrorism Branch, New Jersey Department of Human Services, Division of Mental Health & Addiction Services.


Join a Neighborhood Emergency Response Organization

Learn how to make a difference in your community by joining a local emergency response organization. This webinar offers ways to get involved and highlights best practices from many organizations.


This webinar offers resources to help pet owners prepare their animals for a disaster. Learn about advances in pet housing at evacuation shelters, how therapy dogs can help meet the needs of disaster survivors, and more.


This webinar focuses disaster response as it relates to people with access and functional needs.  Learn more about disability awareness training, aspects of the Americans with Disabilities Act, specific to emergency management, and ensuring an inclusive approach to community preparedness.
This webinar provides an overview of incident response resources, hands-on technical assistance, and information sharing resources that are available from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Critical Infrastructure Cyber Community (C3) Voluntary Program.


It also provides an overview of the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), a global, non-profit organization consisting of 7,000+ members from the banking, securities, and insurance industries. This segment also demonstrates how participants can engage with the FS-ISAC network to support crisis planning and response and recovery activities within their own organizations.


Core Advisory Groups consist of individuals with access and/or functional needs, local emergency managers, other stakeholders, and FEMA staff whose goal is to provide innovative changes to how emergency services are provided in the whole community. Discussion consists of best practices, lessons learned, and potential challenges involved in helping individuals with access and/or functional needs during the response and recovery phases of a disaster.


Inclusive Emergency Management

Discussion on whole community emergency management, inclusive of individuals with disabilities and others with access and functional needs. This session helps to provide the guidance, tools, methods and strategies needed to establish equal physical, communications, and program access.



Lawrence O'Reilly, Director, Region II National Preparedness Division


Last Updated: 
03/30/2020 - 12:19