September 9, 2004—When the Department of Homeland Security wanted
to send a message about the importance of "being prepared" at the launch of
National Preparedness Month in Washington, DC, they turned to the Boy Scouts of
Eagle Scout Tucker Barbour of Troop 500, chartered to the Capitol Hill Scouts
in Washington, DC, introduced Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge at the
kickoff event on the grounds of the United States Capitol.
Barbour was joined on stage by Scouts and leaders from the National Capital
Area Council and representatives of the Girl Scouts.
The Boy Scouts of America is part of a coalition of organizations assembled
by the Department of Homeland Security to promote September as National
Preparedness Month. The emphasis is intended to provide Americans with a variety
of opportunities to learn more about ways they can prepare for an emergency,
get an emergency supply kit, establish a family communications plan, and become
better aware of threats that may impact communities.
The event was attended by honorary National Preparedness Month co-chairs
Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) and Representatives
Christopher Cox (R-CA) and Jane Harman (D-CA), as well as American Red Cross
President and CEO Marsha Evans and leaders of more than 80 other organizations
to announce hundreds of events focused on preparedness across the country.
Following the event, the Scouts distributed emergency preparedness kits to
members of Congress.
To support National Preparedness Month, the Boy Scouts of America is
encouraging Scouts and volunteers to focus on earning the Emergency Preparedness
BSA Award. The award was developed at the request of the Department of Homeland
Security and introduced in 2003.