Getting Started: Basics

When creating preparedness kits start immediately, start small if you have to, and get the easy steps done first. Start by purchasing small poly zip bags from your local craft store such as Hobby Lobby. Use these when organizing items in your preparedness kits. I purchased 200 bags in two sizes for about $7. Use these for organizing and protecting items such as:

  • Batteries: Group batteries by type and keep small numbers of batteries in each zip bag. The bags protect other items from being damaged if a battery leaks. Store 3-4 batteries in each mini zip bag.
  • Bandaids: Store similar bandaid types in zip bags to organize and protect them.
  • Fire Kit that includes matches, striker, tinder, lighter, etc.
  • Patch Kit to make minor repairs to tent, clothes, sleeping bag, etc.

The next step is to organizing your items. In your home make sure that items are easy to find if the power fails. Can you get to flashlights and lanterns quickly? Do NOT store items where they are difficult to access because you may need them quickly. Test your equipment periodically. Make sure the batteries in flashlights and lanterns are charged. Make sure your fire extinguishers are fully pressurized, etc.


Organizing portable kits can be a bit of a challenge. Kit items should be easy to access. Kit containers should be durable and easy to carry. I purchased a double-sided parts box with clear plastic covers for less than $10 from Home Depot. I put the my first aid components in the parts box and added some vehicle related items. I can now easily carry all of those small items and access them quickly. My car kit also includes some translucent ammo cans to store tarps, rain gear, jumper cables, flares, tape, and other assorted items.

There are a number of container options including:

  • A Parts Box with Compartments can store first aid items and other small items such as batteries, spare bulbs, space blanket, flashlight, etc.
  • Ammo Cans house the larger items in my vehicle kit. Cabela’s has translucent plastic cans that are very strong, watertight, inexpensive, and they have a stout handle.
  • Backpack: Many people like having a Bugout Bag that contains essential supplies. Consider purchasing a tactical backpack for a bugout bag.
  • Fishing Utility Containers often include a carry bag with plastic parts boxes that could store a wide variety of supplies.
  • Small Utility Bags can store a wide variety of items such as portable stove, meals, etc.