20 Weeks to Preparedness

The City of Sault Ste. Marie encourages all residents to prepare for disasters by having an emergency supply kit on hand in order to cope for at least 3 days after an emergency. According to a recent survey, many Sault Ste. Marie residents indicated they could not get prepared due to financial constraints.

For this reason, we have created this budget-friendly plan to help residents build a family emergency kit and plan in 20 weeks. Getting prepared does not have to be costly and it does not have to be completed in one day. Remember to start with the supplies you already have - many of the items for your emergency kit can be found around your home! As for the supplies that you do not own, keep your eyes open for sales and take a look at the creative saving tips in this guide.

Remember to consider the size and unique makeup of your family. We hope that using this 20 week plan to get your family prepared brings you and your family peace of mind knowing that you are ready for anything.

To see a printable version, select 20 Weeks to Emergency Preparedness Brochure.

View the complete plan below.

Week 1

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Large tub to hold items
  • Manual can opener
  • Cash (small bills)
$ Saving Tip: No cash to spare right now? Try putting $1 dollar a week into your kit for 20 weeks!

To Do: Review the types of disasters that can happen in our city and how to stay safe at saultstemarie.ca/beprepared.

Week 2

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 4 litres of water
  • Box of granola bars/energy bars
  • 2 cans of meat
$ Saving Tip: Instead of buying water, fill a sanitized juice or pop bottle (2L) with water for your kit.

To Do: Date all edible items going into your kit.

Week 3

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • First aid kit (purchase or make your own)
  • Pain reliever
  • Hand sanitizer
$ Saving Tip: Ask your doctor for free samples of these items for your kit at your next appointment!

To Do: Discuss with your family 2 meeting locations - 1 in your neighbourhood and 1 outside of it - in case you can't get back to your neighbourhood.

Week 4

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Battery powered/crank radio
  • 2 flashlights with batteries
$ Saving Tip: Request more expensive items like these as gifts for the next holiday or occasion!

To Do: Learn how and when to turn off the water, gas, and electricity at the main shut-off locations.

Week 5

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 4 litres of water
  • 2 canned fruits
  • 2 canned vegetables
To Do: Write out important emergency contact phone numbers and include the list in your kit.

Week 6

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Paper plates
  • Plastic cutlery
  • Plastic cups
$ Saving Tip: Stock up on plastic utensils, napkins, condiment packs & other freebies during your next visit to a fast-food restaurant!

To Do: Photocopy important documents (i.e. health, home & vehicle insurance papers, identification, birth & marriage certificates, wills, etc.) and include them in your kit.

Week 7

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Soap
  • Shampoo/conditioner
  • Hairbrush
$ Saving Tip: Will you be staying at a hotel anytime soon? Make sure to take the free bathroom toiletries home for your kit!

To Do: Discuss all safe escape routes from your home with your family.

Week 8

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Utility knife
  • Matches/lighter
  • Candles
To Do: Practice your evacuation plan with your family.

Week 9

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Puzzle book/playing cards/small games
  • Pen, pencil, permanent marker
  • Paper
$ Saving Tip: Most of these items can be found around the house!

To Do: Call your insurance provider to determine whether or not you are covered for disasters that may happen in your area.

Week 10

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 4 litres of water
  • 2 cans of soup
  • 2 can beans
To Do: Arrange for your friend/neighbour to help your children if you are unable to.

Week 11

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Toilet paper
  • Toothbrushes/toothpaste
  • Feminine hygiene supplies
$ Saving Tip: Ask your dentist for dental hygiene samples at your next appointment.

To Do: Arrange for an animal shelter, friend or neighbour to help with your pets if you are unable to.

Week 12

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Rain ponchos
  • Blankets/sleeping bag for each family member
  • Change of clothes & sturdy shoes (per person)
To Do: Check with your child's school/day care center to find out about their disaster plans.

Week 13

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 4 litres of water
  • 2 cans of meat
  • 1 jar peanut butter
To Do: Discuss an out-of-town contact who your family could check in with during a disaster if you are separated.

Week 14

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Prescription medications (1 week supply if possible)
  • Whistle
  • Water purification tablets
$ Saving Tip: Bleach can be used to purify water as well, when done properly. Find out how at www.getprepared.gc.ca.

To Do: Discuss how your family/household will get in touch if cell phone, internet, or landline doesn't work?

Week 15

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 2 boxes of crackers
  • 2 cans fruit
  • 1 box energy bars
To Do: How will your family/household get emergency alerts and warnings? Learn about how the City will get emergency information out during an emergency at saultstemarie.ca/beprepared.

Week 16

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Garbage bags
  • Extra keys (car & house)
  • Cell phone charger
To Do: Consider registering for a local CPR/First Aid class.

Week 17

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Comfort foods (candy, chocolate, etc.)
  • 2 canned fruits
  • 2 canned vegetables
To Do: Find out about your workplace emergency plan.

Week 18

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • 4 litres of water
  • Dry fruit/trail mix
  • 2 cans of soup
To Do: Learn about smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers at www.mcscs.jus.gov.on.ca.

Week 19

For Your Emergency Kit:

  • Basic tools & tarp
  • Duct tape
  • 4 litres of water
$ Saving Tip: Seek out multi-purpose tools to save space & reduce weight in your kit.

To Do: Discuss with your neighbours how you could assist each other (i.e. Do any neighbours have a generator? A BBQ? First Aid training?).

Week 20

Special Considerations For Your Emergency Kit (if required):

  • Pet food and supplies (i.e. bowls, water, leash, vaccination records, etc.)
  • Medical supplies/equipment
  • Infant supplies (i.e. formula, diapers, bottles, pacifiers, etc.)
  • Supplies for your vehicle (i.e. snow brush, scraper, seatbelt cutter, tarp, flares, etc.)
To Do: Mark your calendar to check your supplies in 6 months and make sure everyone knows where your kit is stored!

Contact Us





65 Old Garden River Road
Sault Ste. Marie, ON
P6B 5A5

Our Team