It has become cliché for people to suggest that their preparedness efforts consist of a gun and ammo, so that in the event of an emergency they can forcefully demand that their Mormon neighbors give up some of their food storage. But do Mormons store as much food as people think they do? Do we all have a year supply of wheat, beans, rice, and freeze dried snacks?
A few weeks ago, I was called by my Bishop (pastor) to be the new emergency preparedness coordinator for our ward (congregation). In order to better serve those in the ward and help them prepare, I thought it important to begin my efforts with a survey to gauge where our ward stood. I had a fairly good idea due to previous surveys conducted over the past couple of years in our community (see here and here), but wanted a bit more detail, and with the high turnover in our ward, needed updated information.
With the Bishop’s consent, I circulated a brief, anonymous survey through the ward and got responses from over 50 families. Our ward is a fairly average ward in terms of income, being squarely “middle class,” thus the results are probably pretty indicative of the average (American) Latter-day Saint household. I don’t consider any of this statistically accurate, but it’s close enough to be reliable and representative of the average family, in my opinion.
Below are the results of this anonymous survey.
My impressions? This is about what I expected. It’s not encouraging, of course, when a few families skew the results upward with their year supply of food; far too many families responded that they only had a few days or a couple weeks worth of food in their home.
Time to roll up my sleeves.