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by Sara Croymans & Lori Hendrickson, Extension Educators, Family Development – Resiliency, University of Minnesota Extension

The Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) is a network of extension professionals interested in disaster education and programming. EDEN works to help make disaster preparation and recovery easier by collaborating and sharing disaster education materials. The mission of the EDEN is to reduce the impact of disasters through research-based education.

Military Family Service Providers who are in a position to assist military families prepare, respond, and recover from disasters are invited to check out EDEN’s extensive resources and to reach out to EDEN representatives in your area. Every state, as well as three US territories, has EDEN delegates from various disciplines, including agriculture and natural resources; community and economic development; family and consumer sciences; and youth development. You can search for delegates by state or institution by visiting EDEN’s website and clicking on “Directory” on the top toolbar.

In addition, check out the EDEN website resource dashboard where you can search for disaster resources across a variety of subject matter, including agriculture & zoonotic, community & economic, family & health, and naturally occurring disasters. You can also narrow your search for resources by the type of hazard, focus of concern, phase of recovery, institution, program area providing the information, or by subject or content.  A few resources that caught our eye were:

    • Epidemic Preparedness for Community Organizations – This program walks organizations through a process to learn about potential epidemics and develop plans to serve their members and their communities before, during, and after an epidemic.
    • Family Preparedness – A program to teach families and individuals how to make family disaster kits, develop a family disaster plan, and be informed about and prepared for various disasters.
    • High Speed Hand Washing Resources – Lesson plans and posters are available to teach the high speed hand washing technique with a variety of ages and languages.

We encourage you to follow EDEN on social media including, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.  This will allow you to receive information about the latest disaster resources available from Extension partners across the country.

We also invite everyone to participate in the OneOp (MFLN) 2021 Military Family Readiness Academy (MFRA) which focuses on Disaster and Hazard Readiness in Action. As a continuation of the 2020 Academy series, the 2021 MFRA builds on the basic concepts of disaster and hazard management, including impacts and responses, planning, collaboration and mitigation.

Through eight online learning sessions, this series prepares military family service providers and Extension educators to support the readiness and well-being of military families during disasters and hazards in areas such as caregiving, children and family needs, nutrition and finances. Dialogue is a central component of this series — lessons learned, resources, and insights are shared across panelists and speakers, and participants are encouraged to contribute as much as possible. Register for one or all of the sessions on the MFRA page.


This blog post was written by two Extension Educators; Sara Croymans, MEd, AFC, University of Minnesota Extension Educator, is a member of the OneOp Family Transitions team, military spouse and mother.

Lori Hendrickson, MEd, AFC, CFCS,  Extension Educator with the University of Minnesota Extension, focuses her work on enhancing the financial capability of individuals and families, positively impacting financial security throughout life.