In 2016, founder of Here Comes the Apocalypse Jennifer Heller’s budding interest in disaster preparedness manifested itself in her holiday gifts. She gave her closest loved ones Go Bags, assuming most would sit unused until it was time for their annual maintenance checks.
Less than a year later, in October 2017, her in-laws were forced to evacuate their home as the Tubbs Fire moved in, eventually destroying their home and all of their belongings. The Go Bags they had received as gifts were at their sides as they rebuilt their lives.
In 2018, Heller’s husband purchased a HEPA air purifier as a holiday gift for the whole family. They didn’t expect to rely on it so heavily, but it was an absolutely essential part of their lockdown experience during 2020, when a record-breaking 9,900 fires in California made both outdoor and indoor air quality extremely unhealthy for their small family.
A few years later, another preparedness gift came in handy. Heller gave fire blankets as holiday gifts in 2022, and kept one for herself. In early 2023, a milk carton misplaced on her stove caused a fairly large fire, which the fire blanket kept under control until her husband was able to fully douse it.
In just one family, you can track the sizable impact of preparedness gifts within a single decade. As shoppers search for items to satisfy their gifting obligations this season, the gift of safety is one that could elevate an obligatory gift to a life-changing gift. And as Heller’s fire blanket experience proves, spending a lot isn’t the only way to make an impact.
Preparedness items are available for all budgets, from high-end splurges to simple tools.
- Stand-by generators for power outages
- A full year’s supply of dehydrated emergency food
- In-ground disaster shelters for homes without basements
- Pre-packaged Go Bags for fast evacuations
- Air purifiers for poor indoor air quality caused by wildfires
- A Here Comes the Apocalypse Disaster Bundle for comprehensive disaster prep
- Fire ladders for additional egress options on higher floors
- Kitchen fire extinguishers
- Portable power banks to stay charged during power outages
- Emergency blankets for the car emergency kit
- Flashlights and a full pack of their corresponding batteries
- 100% wool beanies for fire-resistant warmth
Making a habit of gifting preparedness items during the holidays also offers shoppers an opportunity to build on the gifts they have given in previous years. Heller says, “After a few years of preparedness gifts, recipients could have all the tools they’ll need to face the disasters that are likely for their region. Preparing for disasters is essential, and making it part of the holidays is a great way to make it more fun for everyone.” Learn more about disaster preparedness and view lists of more prep gifts here.