Friday, May 26, 2006

Hurricane Katrina

For Immediate Release
Contact: Diana Ennen, Virtual Word Publishing
(954) 971-4025
Hurricane Katrina – What You Can Do to Help Those In Need

Margate, FL, August 30, 2005. Hurricane Katrina’s catastrophic blow to the coastal states has left our entire nation devastated. As conditions worsen, the fate of many unknown and gas prices on the rise and gas rationing a fear, we need to come together to help. The one question on everyone’s mind remains, what can I do? Having experienced Katrina as a Category 1 hurricane here in South Florida, experiencing six hurricanes since last August, and from extensive research for my book on disaster recovery, The Home Office Recovery Guide, I offer the following tips:
Tip One – Offer Emotional Support: People going though this disaster and their families are going to need a great deal of emotional support. Not just today, but long afterwards. Posttraumatic stress is real and having someone who cares will enable them to get their life back together quicker. Let them know you are there for them. Encourage them to get professional help if needed. Invite them into your homes.

Tip Two – Offer Financial Support. If you have a specific family to contribute to, then support them as much as you financially can. Yes, you can take just a little out of the savings to help. There’s plenty of time to put it back in later. See if your church or other community organization can sponsor different families. If contributing to charitable organizations, make sure that the organization is legitimate. The Red Cross is one we know is good- Also, when deciding who to donate to, find out how much money goes to the recovery victims themselves. For example, the Lutheran Social Services is set up to give 100% donations to the victims themselves ECLA. Can you do something that can raise money? Do it. Get your kids involved and show them the value of helping others.

Tip Three – Get Others Involved. I’m on a virtual assistant forum now that is going to sponsor a drive to collect business items and supplies and then we will make sure they go to those who need them to help rebuild their businesses. We know many not only lost their homes, but their businesses as well. What do you have around the home that is extra? Fax, Copier, Printer? Naturally having new things is great. But, if you don’t have extra money to contribute look around and see what is collecting dust. When you go to Office Depot or your office supply store next time, take advantage of the buy one, get one free specials and keep the paid one and donate the free one. My website at Virtual Word Publishing, has additional information.

Tip Four -- Help Them Recover. Help them complete the necessary paperwork for insurance purposes and recovery efforts. They are traumatized and things that seem simple to you bear emotional significance and devastating memories. Guide them though this process.

And finally, provide spiritual guidance. No matter what faith you are, spread your faith with others, and let them know that this too shall pass. As a nation we will be there to help them recover. Every one of us can make a difference. And that difference will help those families and those cities to recover and enjoy the things that we are enjoying right now.
Media – To schedule Diana Ennen for a radio, TV, or media engagement contact her at or (954) 971-4025. Diana Ennen is the co-author of The Home Office Recovery Plan: Disaster Preparedness Guide For Your Home-Based Business (Patty Gale, co-author) She is president of Virtual Word Publishing,

Hurricane Season Begins Soon, Prepare Now

Contact: Diana Ennen
(954) 971-4025

Predictions for Hurricane Season In – Above Average Season Approaching
Start Now to Protect Your Home and Your Home Office

Margate, Florida, May, 2006. The forecast is officially in. The National Hurricane Center predicts an above average tropical season with 13-16 named storms, 8-10 hurricanes and 4-6 Category 3 or above hurricanes. This brings fearful anticipation for those still struggling with the hurricanes of last year. Roofs are still damaged, families still displaced, and now a new season approaches. What’s the key to making it through this busy season --early preparation.

Local author Diana Ennen with the help of co-author Patty Gale, has written a terrific resource entitled The Home Office Recovery Plan: Disaster Preparedness for Your Home Business. Although the book is designed for home offices and business contingency planning, the valuable information inside can help anyone preparing for a storm. Their mission is to teach others how to ensure the survival of the home and home-office in the event of an emergency.

In Ennen’s case, this guide has been a lifesaver as a resident of South Florida. Ennen has prepared for eight major hurricanes in the past two years with Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Wilma taking a direct hit on Broward County. One section in particular was of vital importance. The book includes information on keeping track of family and business associates, including college students. Ennen states, “My son goes to college in Gainesville. I had all the information I needed already written down so I can easily contact him in case something would happen in his area or mine. I think all colleges should have something like this.”

Here are vital tips you need to secure your home and business.

A breakdown of all persons in your family, business, close relatives with complete contact information. We recommend additionally putting this on a 3 x 5 card for your younger children.
An inventory of all your home furnishings and business furnishings. Also, keep receipts and photos.

Insurance information. Write down all your policies and coverage. In addition to having this information if you did need to file a claim, it also helps to see if you have enough coverage.
Business Continuity Plan – Plan ahead for all aspects of your business, including client contact information, back-up procedures, work normally done, etc.

Medical information. The well being of yourself and family is of utmost importance. You need to write down all your medicines, doctors, medical conditions, etc. This section can literally save your life. Don’t forget to include drug dosages.

A hurricane/tornado/storm preparation guide. And everything on that list should be bought in advance.

Gale also knows the importance of this book having lived in New York after 9/11 and had the task of preparing a similar guideline for a company she was working with at the time. Both know the importance in ensuring your business will withstand whatever this hurricane or any disaster (including a theft in the office or fire) has to offer.

For information on preparing your home, stop by Prepare now for peace of mind and the safety of your family and business.