GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — With September being National Preparedness Month, both ECU Health and the American Red Cross are stressing the importance of being ready in the face of natural disasters.

Michael Brown is a disaster volunteer with the American Red Cross. He said there are three steps to being prepared for any natural disaster.

“First thing is make a plan. Second thing, we want people to do is make a kit. So I want you to have a kit of things that’ll help you to keep yourself and your family safe for three days,” Brown said. “The third thing again is we want you to stay informed, we want you to know where are the places you can get information.”

These emergency kits should contain items like water, non-perishable foods, flashlights, batteries and ways to contact people and get information.

“Hurricanes are one thing, floods are another thing, possible we’ll have an ice storm around here that may happen in the winter, so you get prepared now for natural disasters, it’s going to help you in whatever kind of natural disaster that we may experience,” said Brown.

Chris Starbuck with the Eastern Healthcare Preparedness Coalition at ECU Health Medical Center said being safe does not have to be expensive.

“You can buy these materials from the dollar store. You start out early looking months ahead and just build slowly. Build what you can and it doesn’t have to be expensive items,” said Starbuck.

Starbuck also says that people should have multiple emergency kits for the home, car and work. Stephanie Seals with the Eastern Healthcare Preparedness Coalition also says being prepared could cut down on the anxiety of natural disasters.

“When you have a kit ready to go, it makes everything so much easier,” said Seals. “No matter what you have, it’s better than nothing.”