Saturday, July 5, 2008

Group Survival (Part 2)

Once you realize the problems involved with forming a survival group, you should then make plans for the problems associated with the location of that group. You are going to need a safe place to go, one that is easily accessible from as many routes as possible, and has adequate room for everyone. You’re also going to need one that is capable of serving the immediate needs of the group so that everyone’s survival is assured. It must offer security and protection, food and water, shelter, and a certain level of sustainability (space for a garden, good soil to grow crops, adequate source of water, etc.).

The first item you will need to determine is who is going to be in your survival group. The main component of your survival group should be FAMILY groups. This will create a strong foundation for you to build on as you start your group. The critically important values of trust, reliability, compatibility and dependability should already be well established in the family group from years of contact with each person in the family group. You will also most likely know their strengths and their weaknesses and the value of any skill sets (marksman, mechanic, carpenter, etc.) they may have. The second component will be those close friends and neighbors that share the same values and beliefs. They can also add to the skill sets of your group and increase its sustainability. You will ultimately have to make a tough decision as to who will be in your group and who will be left out. You will probably not be able to include everyone in your group as its size will be limited by the available resources of your group location.

The second item to consider after you have figured out how large will your group will be, who will be in it and how much space is going to be needed is its LOCATION. You will need room for gardens, housing, etc. and for everyone (including children, seniors, pets, and those with special needs) in your group. Putting people already stressed by a survival situation into a limited area will only create further problems and additional stress if everyone doesn’t have “their space”. You will also need to make sure that the size of your group does not endanger the sustainability of your group and create a burden on whatever resources you may have available. The location you choose should ideally be located close to a small town or farming community that could offer further support to your survival group’s needs. Small towns and communities will offer further resources to your survival group such as farmers markets, support for the protection of your group, barter opportunities, etc. Many of these small towns or communities will be able to go through their daily routines with little or no help from outside sources.

The third item is to make sure you have well established lines of COMMUNICATION for everyone in your survival group. Knowing their e-mail address when the internet is down will not help. You will need some way to contact them or locate them (physical location?) in an emergency. Most family groups, close friends, and neighbors already have these lines of communication in place. Still, as many family members and friends move about and progress through their daily routines the ability to maintain contact with each other can suffer. A change in phone carriers, the failure to update your written list of contact information, etc. may endanger your efforts to keep in touch with each other at a critical time.

Create a “comfort zone” for your survival group that will be able to meet their needs and it will have a better chance of being successful. Family and friends have been always been the main component of groups in our lives and a group comprised mainly of family and close friends will offer you the best chance for survival in any situation.

Part 3 will detail some specific options for your survival group.

Stay above the water line!



Patricia said...

I would suggest to anyone thinking about surviving in a group to read Kunstler's novel, A World Made by Hand and other survival fiction. In fiction, theoretical ideas about people in groups are considered--the who what when where why and how of it. Also read Lucifer's Hammer--there's a strong group formed in that book that does NOT allow others in. It is a harsh world in Hammer. In World Made by Hand, the group consists of those who lived in the small town prior to TEOTWAWKI. A religious group of folk from the South wander in and the novel shows how the two groups blended (or didn't). Another group run the local salvage (former landfill) yard. These folks are antaganistic to the townsfolk. It's a good book. Check your library.

In SM Stirling's Dies the Fire series, different groups form with different beliefs and abilities--but they become allies with each other--or enemies.

Most groups will form from families and friends. Small towns of people who already know each other. If trust isn't already there, will it have time to grow in a very stressful situation? It will probably have to be there first.

For example--I'm a "newcomer" here in our little community. I've only been here 8 years or so. I've learned to fit in for the most part and people accepted me as one of them. Am I close to all of them, or even know all of them? No. Don't have to be. Have to be able to be civil and to work with them. Push comes to shove, I'm willing to work with them,
help feed them, take care of them, etc. There's some here I don't like, will never like. It doesn't matter--I don't have to like them, just have to get along with them.

You've made some excellent observations here--there's an awful lot to consider in this topic. Good job!

riverwalker said...

To: patricia

I have read Lucifer's Hammer and it is an excellent story. The challenge in all things is to find the combination that works best for you (and your group).


Natog said...

Thanks for the post! keep them coming!

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