Friday Poll Day (Yep, It’s new)

This is the first poll in our new “Poll Friday” blog segment… if you have ideas for poll topics please email those to me. Thank you.

Do you plan to help your neighbours after a disaster?

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Please take a few moments to elaborate on your answer in the comments below.

About M.D. Creekmore

M.D. Creekmore is the owner and editor of He is the author of four prepper related books and is regarded as one of the nations top survival and emergency preparedness experts. Read more about him here.


  1. button crazy says:

    I will help only to the point that it does affect my family doing without food and medical care. Most of my neighours are retired. I am hoping that they have planned for a disaster.

  2. spidermonkey25 says:

    NO,NO,NO… I do not plan to help anyone other than my immediate family and the reasoning is thus- It is common sense to have a supply of food and emergency items in your home, Those who don’t do this are negligent and I view them in the same fashion that I view the generational welfare recipients that are so common today, As parasites who want to put forth NO effort and have things handed to them. I will not part with anything to help these slobs.
    I would be willing to share instruction and knowledge on how to procure their OWN food or other items. That is as far as I would take it.

  3. Help only to the extent that I would not put my family in harms way. The Bible commands us to take care of our own family. I don’t expect others to prepare for me, I can’t prepare for others.

  4. Depending on the type of situation I would help to clear debri, open roads, first aid. Again depending on the situation, food and other resources would be protected. Obviously if it is a short term, localized disaster that would change my attitude as opposed to a major, country wide SHTF.

    • Tanksbuddy says:

      I agree Texanadian, there are strings attached. I would help with many things, and do so to keep the peace, but I will draw the line when it comes to food, medical supplies, fuel, and other things which would be hard to replace.
      And one other thing to think about. When disaster hits, it hits fast. Katrina taught us we always need to be prepared. Food, Ammo, Gas, Generators, etc, were unavailable, and the unprepared wanted them, and would do almost anything to get it.

  5. Judy, another one says:

    Like everyone else my ‘Yes’ is qualified. Who is it and why.

  6. The couple on one side of us we will help with anything we can. Two neighbors across the street we will also help. Most of the others have made no effort to get acquainted with us and are therefore not really neighbors. We suspect that some of the real neighbors are fairly well prepared in some ways and will only require limited help. We already share tools and chores (not to mention the occasional baked treat!). Any other sharing will come naturally.

  7. PreppingMomma5 says:

    Mostly no. But that’s also mostly because my family is so large and it isn’t exactly cheap to prep for 7 people. If I have a wealth of preps when everything goes crazy then I will help.

  8. We all help each other now with the exception on one left wing nearly communist couple with more crazy ideas than common sense. I already have a commitment to help the elderly couple across the street. And so I have made my plans to do what I can as long as I remain here. As soon as the bol is all ready however, I would probably get there if I could were it some long term event.

  9. Petticoat Prepper says:

    Like Mary, we’ll help but only those we know. I am working on gathering ‘enough’ as are most of us. I have rice and beans and beans and rice for my neighbors. I know one retired couple a few doors down who will need lots of help. She has had to come borrow a can of tomatoes just to fix dinner as she doesn’t EVER have extra stuff in the house. Which is maybe why her house is always neat as a pin and mine isn’t?

  10. Know all my neighbors , 80% have been here over 20 years and the ones that have not are distant cousins. Most will help at the drop of a hat, and went to school with 3 of them. My direct neighbor to the west and I are really good with helping each other or loaning equipment when needed, and besides he is my insurance agent so if he stops helping I will move my ins to someone else!!!!

  11. My answer is like Mary’s I have two wonderful neighbors who have helped me innumerable times with battery jumps, help during snowstorms by repairing a water leak (work requires our presence – hospital- regardless of weather and I was stuck in town for 4 days.

  12. The next door neighbors I will help out what I can. They have health issues and I have no problem helping them. My other next door neighbor works at a grocery store so I reckon that he is kinda set The hippies accross the street I will help a bit cause of the young kids. None of them will know how much we have.

  13. What I will do to help depends on the disaster. I am a good neighbor and will help clear up and repair as I am able, but only after I have seen to my family’s needs. In no way will I expose our preps.

    • sw't tater says:

      Exactly, How we are, One income will only go so far…I have been trying to get those ,who are not blind to begin with doing what they can now.Starting to fill the holes..for their own immediate and short term needs. Many ppl ….already have gardens and put up food to get them thru winter and early spring.Those who refuse to help themselves will receive directions to other areas of assistance.

  14. Swap goods/skills back and forth with next door neighbor. All others need not apply.

    Minor clearing/closing up, maybe, if neighborhood depends on it.

    • Let me expand this a bit. First post applies for long term. Short term, we’ll help how we can but no one will ever know what we really have. Long-term is a whole different scenario, particularly if things are really really bad. My absolute best guess is one or two from a one-mile stretch on our road actually being willing or able to think defense. Way too many wrong-minded people are familiar with our road. I don’t think a garden in our yard is very defendable. Recession is one thing, full-blown depression is another story.

  15. Shades of Green says:

    My yes would be like all the above ones. I would to the extent that it did not harm my family. I would try to teach others how to grow stuff if it was a long term situation but my family come first.

  16. My neighbors live under the same roof as I do, they have two little boys under 3 years old, who are best friends with my two boys (both under 3). The Mother and Father both grew up on farms and have connections in the area. My wife and I are “naturally reserved” (we hardly know anyone) transplants.

    Helping them in any temporary or even long term disaster will probably be to my family’s long term benefit. Plus it seems to be the right thing to do.

    However, I have been thinking I should write out for myself exactly how to tell someone that if they tell anyone else about the help that they are receiving that help will end immediately and permanently. Maybe: Loose lips sink ships and you are on a borrowed life boat.

  17. Annie Nonymous says:

    We already know that our “neighborhood” will form a defensive and support circle with each other, so in a very real way, yes, we will help our neighbors, just as they will help us. We’re all prepped, so the thought of “screw you, pal” not only doesn’t fit the mentality of where we live, it jus ain’t Christian.

    Of course… our “neighborhood” is remote by miles from the nearest town, we get snowed in pretty consistantly, so for us – it’s SOP to help out one another. Plus – I want to know who lives near us, so we know who don’t belong there. 😉

  18. Unfortunately things are not as simple as Yes or No. There are neighbors that I would help without question, there are others that I would not help at all. Most are in the middle.

    Relationships matter; before disaster strikes as well as after. Those that have shown themselves willing to help out, even if they are not preppers, are the most likely to get help from me. Those that are and have been takers, can move out to the FEMA camp.

  19. My vote is no… Not in the “screw them” way, but simply no. One set of neighbors is nice enough, but they are a “take care of our own” type family and I have a funny feeling they are they same as us and well prepared for most eventualities. The other neighbors are drunks and/or druggies (users for sure and possibly dealers). I do have a feeling we may be defending against them if they find out we have something set aside for a rainy day.

    I have no problem helping by way of debris removal or something like that, just in no way would I be helping these people with food and supplies when I know what is going on now.

    • I agree with Shandi. Simply because I am by nature suspicious and keep to myself. The communuity work that is needed I will participate in such as clearing ways of transport, etc. But my one weak spot will be the children. They dont get a chance to pick parents. For my own good I should take the first opportunity to bug out with my wife and dogs (children are grown & gone) before the need of armed conflict puts all in jeapordy. That has always been the plan. However, if I am not quick enough, I do maintain a well supplied armory.

  20. Casey in CA says:

    I don’t have an answer because it really depends on the situation.

  21. I’m actually including my immediate neighbors in my numbers for food preps. I’ve mentioned them needing to have some emergency food, but they did not seem very interested, and I left it at that. I have not told the neighbors I’m saving food to feed them, I do not want them to tell their families and friends to come here if TSHTF – I can only do so much on one income.

    I think we would be safer with a small community rather than just my family, so it’s partially self interest.

    • It’s always self intrest to be with a group.
      And people are more likely to help you if you have a reputation of being helpful yourself.

      • I agree!
        Being in the rebuild “group” (if country/world wide) would be important. Loner’s will have lessor input.

  22. I will help to a point. I’d rather be part of a team on my street, and maybe even in charge of something, than be the grumpy miser who won’t share or help at all and then who gets ganged up on. I have to sleep sometime.

    I see this help as debris cleaning, first aid, etc. Especially in the first few days, I could see showing people how to preserve the meat thawing in their freezers, or making soup with it, and then having a soup kitchen thing for the street, sticking a bunch of clean filtered water out for people, or helping patrol if there’s a need and no LEO’s to be found.

    However, I plan to cache. I don’t want to be made to disgorge everything I have saved, or to be disarmed by anyone. And if anyone breaks into my house they will likely get a lead supplement.

  23. I wish one more option for an answer had been given…”I will help to the extent that it does not hurt my family, my family comes first and foremost”

  24. Ozark Flower Lady says:

    I would help but not become depended on. In a long term disaster, I am prepared to teach my few neighbors new skills. Otherwise, I prepare for my family as their bugout location and for my own Mother Nature winter issues.

  25. I should add, I do plan to put some of my own food up for that soup kitchen thing I was writing about, too. I didn’t make that clear. In fact the first pot of soup will come from me, and then I’ll talk to people who show up to eat it and organize them (I hope).

  26. It is very encouraging to me to see it currently 126-17 against “screw them”.
    Frankly, I’m tired of reading prepper commentors who are all Lone Wolf or Last Man Standing.

    • I suspect that the screw em/lone wolf is the reason preppers/survivalist have such bad press. I’ve read on these pages people joking about shooting people who ask for help. Or were they joking.

  27. Dean in Michigan says:

    Like Mary said, I would help the couple next door to me, but I have had little to no interaction with the others around me, so they will be on their own.

    That help would only go so far though. They have always been nice to my family, they are good gardeners, and the husband is a fiesty old country boy with some nice guns.

    Pairing with them could have it’s advantages, but I would never let on to the amount of food and water I have stored.

    • livinglife says:

      exactly correct. limited help and no divulging stores or arms if not part of your inner circle.

  28. 87% say yes. Interesting to note the previous corresponants all have conditions. I don’t. My only limit is health and resources.

    So I guess my point is, to that 87%. What are your conditions?

    • Excellent! My thoughts also.
      “Conditions” (IMO) should not be considered until neighbors show there colors!

    • I will take care of children, particularly the children next door, but I will not risk the survival of my own teenager to help adults who drive late model cars, take fabulous vacations, get constant plastic surgery, and have no extra supplies or food on hand. I have a 2001 Ford, a 1999 Mercury and a 2000 Chevy. I have a garden and chickens. I put off needed repairs on absolutely everything until I can afford to pay for it. Just sayin. The sheeple need to grow up or face the consequences. God bless.

  29. The Last American says:

    “He is closest when He is needed the most”. Yes, period.

  30. My neighbors are my family

  31. My “yes” is also qualified. I have “helped” by informing friends and neighbors as to the need to have at least minimal preparations in the case of a SHTF situation. I have planned and prepared with my immediate family in mind. I will help with information as long as possible and then will help with rebuilding when the time presents itself. Those that have not made preparatons, have made a choice. They at that point must live by that choice.

  32. j.r. guerra in s. tx. says:

    Some of them, definitely – they are friends and neighbors. Some have young infant children – what have they done to become an ignored problem. They helped us out, and we’ve responded in kind.

    Others – not so much. The family with large dangerous dog that constantly breaks it chain and fights with neighborhood dogs. If after a major event occurs and the dog comes onto my property to threaten us or my dog – its going to Doggy Heaven.

  33. I am stocking a large supply of first aid supplies. That will be my primary response in times of destruction. However, I am looking for ways to join with others to provide cooked food. I just feel it is safer to be a part of a locally supervised ministry response. My little town looks peaceful and innocent, but under the surface armed drug gangs control a lot of territory. I just bought a huge cast iron dutch oven that will hold several gallons of soup or stew. I’ll be utilizing that for family members and my widow friends who have no family near.

  34. We only have a couple of “neighbors,” with the closest being 1/2 mile away. By the nature of where we live, we are all pretty self sufficient. Town is 20 miles away, and we consider many there to be neighbors. In any situation we would help where we can, after tending to our family’s immediate needs. We will not/do not advertise the extent of our preparedness. We feel that is a dangerous invitation for trouble in any serious situation.

  35. I also have to say a qualified “yes”. Depends on the situation, and my family comes first. But 1 neighbor is an ER nurse, and another is one of those 1950’s era garage tinkerers – you know, the kind you’d have to be to use the old articles in Popular Science! And support from them is mutual. As for the rest of the people in the area, probably not, except maybe like Texanadian said, debris removal or small scale. For the rest, they scoff – actually scoff – at the idea of preparing for anything, and I’m not inclined to bring anything up to such folks more than once. So for them, the property line is the proverbial line in the sand. They should have planned better.

  36. livinglife says:

    my neighbors are part of the survival plan.

  37. Mother Earth says:

    I said no because I don’t like either of my neighbors, they have never been anything but a pain in the a** to me. Now there some folks a couple miles away I would help, but they are not close enough to be called neighbors in my mind.

  38. Hunker-Down says:

    I didn’t vote because my answer is both yes and no.
    If someone is a threat to our safety or to our long term food or shelter, the answer is NO.
    If someone has or will help with safety, food or shelter we will do all we can for that person or family.

    My biggest fear is that I will judge erroneously. Thank God, the DW is a good judge of people.

  39. Nightshift says:

    I speak from experience. After Katrina My family fed an additional 20 people for 10 days till a grocery store opened. If I had it to do today, I would only help about a third of them. We fed them real food, I put diapers and formula on and in a baby for that time…we had some left over…Many of them were ungrateful. Had the babies mother show her butt at the community table cause she didn’t like peas. Acted stupid about it. My wife promptly told her to leave the table if she couldn’t keep her comments to herself. Had another idiot burn up all his gas running a genny 24-7 staring at Satallite news. I ran mine twice a day for 4 hours to keep the refridgerator and freeze cold, and make precious coffee in the mornings. He got pissed cause I wouldnt give him any when it was what kept food for his family. Anyway if you google “My hurricane Katrina experience by Nightshift” It is posted on line…I think on survivalboards. Give folks a LEO perspective from South Mississippi.

    • Thanks for sharing your experience. I am looking forward to reading it.
      I am not surprised that the folks you helped felt entitled to it. Sad.

  40. Anyone that’s willing to pitch in to help me on the farm is welcome to share the grain and milk the farm produces. Won’t help? Screw you, buddy.

  41. There are 5 houses on our street including ours. Two houses have an elderly person each – we’re talking over 70, well over in one. The other two have small children. We will help as much as we can but I would expect physical labor type exchanges from the younger ones. With the older ones, I’m sure the lady would have knowledge to share in the realm of cooking and the gentleman would be able to help with mental stability for the entire group as he is a psychologist. It’s an odd dynamic, but I think the two elderly folks would be of nearly as much help as the younger ones, although not physically.

    • One set of my neighbors are retired teachers. I know they would help with labor as much as they could, but they could most certainly help with child rearing and education, and that is a very necessary duty as well. In an EOTWAWKI type situation, there is plenty to do for anyone except the sick and disabled, and their duty is to get well.

  42. Should have had a “Depends on the neighbor” option. Rural neighbors involve larger distances, at least for me they do. There are several in the surrounding area that would be part of the problem and a few who be part of the solution. Family and allies get help. The rest can rot in the beds they made for themselves.

  43. We will help as much as we can. Our neighbors except for few are self sufficent. One family not far from us has an autistic child, and they refuse to prep. That weighs heavy on my mind. I will wait to see what happens. We have an elderly neighbor who I am very attached to that we will care for. No matter what. He only eats soup and brownies anyway. He has no meds, and is pretty healthy. I can walk to his house and not be seen from the road.

    We have supplies to spare. On our own terms. No druggies, no drunks, no sexual offenders. Ya, I know who they are. Look it up on your city/county website.
    We have differnet kinds charity packs made with hygiene, food, and water. Baby packs. Kids packs. Adult packs. Pregnant packs. I have spent years collecting items for these packs. Thank goodness for thrift and dollar stores.

    We have also made it part of our preps to make it so no one can get to us to ask if we don’t want them to. It was a gift from my husband because I worried about it so much.
    Private road, heavy gates, barriers, dogs, armed guards. The people that don’t know us, probably wont see us. If they do know us, they have been told to prepare, they know not to ask. If they do they will be in dire straights. We will deal with it on a case by case basis.

    • Schatzie Ohio says:

      Mama J any chance that you would do a write up of what you put into those different charity packs?

      • Schatzie Ohio,
        Totally. If you tell me what your name means..! i wil submit an article tomorrow. What is a Schatzie?

  44. As others have said, the extent of the help would depend on the situation. In a local disaster such as a hurrican or such, I would help as much as possible, including the stores I have for my family. However, in a nationwide or worldwide problem, my help would be mostly information and maybe physical help but not very much in the way of my stores.

  45. Soggy Prepper says:

    I just put no, that way when (if) I do help I’ll feel good and if I don’t I won’t disappoint myself. I have family that will be coming. My family comes first.

    We have an elderly neighbor I will help to some extent, but he has a son-in-law loser that would be a taker that lives with him.

    Then if you give someone food they will tell their cousin ‘Moochie’. Cousin Moochie will come with some of his buddies to relieve you of your dilemma to help or not to help your neighbors.

    But like everyone else, the decision will ultimately be decided on the situation at the time. Especially if it’s a short term, city/region type emergency as opposed to a shtf everywhere long term emergency.

  46. I’m surrounded by family and close friends–What I have, they have. Even though most do not even know it…..

  47. We will help our neighbors and they will help us. It’s a suburban area we help each other all the time. Of course, the scope and duration of an event will make a difference.A few days to a couple weeks should be no problem but 4,5,6, weeks without enough food,water,meds,shelter,heat,cigs or alcohol may be different. 50 or 60 armed neighbors can be a great asset to fend off bad guys, help with repairs,medical needs,plant crops, etc. Help as much as you can, but use opsec to protect your family. They may not have prepared, but they can be useful to you with a little give and take. Its better to have them join you than turn against you.

  48. I checked yes because there were only two options. I would, however, like to qualify that yes answer. As I see it “help” and “assist” are two different terms and to me have two entirely different meanings. In our neighborhood where all but three of us are the entitlement society, to them “help” would mean stepping in and taking over the governments help to them permanently. These people I would not help. I would however assist them by checking to see if they made it through whatever catastrophe occurred and offer to assist in downed tree, rubble, etc removal and ensure their dwelling was habitable. I would also probably offer a hot meal if necessary but some people see an offer of help as long term take over responsibility. My other two neighbors I would immediately and without forethought help with whatever they needed since during the refuse removal and restoration of my property, they were always right there to lend a hand and while not knowledgeable with the tools or methods, soon learned to the extent that they borrowed (and promptly returned) my tools in as good a condition as they got them and then later solicited my advise on what make or brand of tool to buy for their own use. My door would be open to these two families and I strongly suspicion one of them immediately across the street are preppers. The third gentleman is on his third marriage and while he is an allright type of guy, his wife however is an import from Mexico with an entitlement mentality as exhibited this past couple of summers by moving into my woods without prior permission and leaving all their picnic remnants strewn haphazardly about and then griped because I asked them to at least police the area when they finished. Her husband would receive help but she would receive nothing from me.

  49. The Purger says:

    Life is a constant learning process. If they aren’t prepared when the time comes, then if they survive the situation, I bet they will be prepared in the future for the next time.
    Although the sad fact is, “Some people are doomed to repeat history, as they never seem to learn from experience”.

  50. I have exactly one neighbor that I am willing to help in the event of an emergency. As for the rest, NO. They laugh and make derogatory comments to and at us for looking forward. So, when the big shoe drops, they’ll be on their own.

  51. Suburban Housewife says:

    Oh, I love polls! Good idea M.D. – its’ fun to read peoples reasoning.
    I voted yes because I think labor, skills, advice, encouragement and prayer counts as helping. I don’t know my neighbors very well – my fault because I’m a bit of a recluse. We have tons of little kids of all ages running around out there and I have added a few bags of Bear Creek mac n cheese to have to share – for the kids. Other than that our food is primarily for personal and family use – if family can get here. But then again I guess it depends on the situation = I might be more giving if it looks like a short term temporary situation.

  52. You need to include neighbors! It is one of the commandments given to us by Christ to love thy neighbor as thy self! There are those who you may not want to help, but you cannot watch another perish before you very eyes, it is inhumane. Prepare for your family and have spares for charity and barter. There maybe something you need from them when SHTF. They may possess a skill, unknowing to you, that you may not have and need. Preppers get a bad name from those who think of only themselves and are called selfish. Take initiative to educate others, if they don’t listen or mock, move on to the next person. Maybe I am being naive, but I try to look for the good side of things no matter how bad it gets.

  53. necwarrior says:

    While it would be easy to say the heck with them that can backfire on you, for instance they may have a skill set you could use, or when spurned they could bring a crowd to your doorstep.

  54. Mostly “yes”, partly “no”. As everyone else has said, it will depend. A couple of the neighbors have always been friendly and helpful, and I will help these folks as much as I can without depriving my family. I will also help in community efforts, if such a movement develops (hoping, not expecting). My next door neighbor however, I expect to be the first to turn into a Zombie. I fully expect to be defending myself and my family from him. He is my biggest concern.

  55. ozhillbilly says:

    I voted yes but like many of you but will/can only do it to a point. My immediate family and the closest neighbors will be the likely beneficiaries of my efforts.

  56. recoveringidiot says:

    I have known all the folks that live near me all my life except for a few new ones and they seem to be good people. I have said before that when things get bad we all do what we can for each other. Several years back a neighbor had a chimney fire, didn’t burn it to the ground but messed it up bad and a man that I knew to be some what of a tight wad drove up in his nearly new, very nice motor home and left it for the family to stay in while they fixed up the damaged house. Goes to show I don’t know how everybody will act in a bad situation. We have enough hurricanes, tornado’s and the occasional ice storm to show how people will react when bad things happen. I voted yes because I don’t think I could make it in a long shtf event without my neighbors and I intend to do all I can in return.

  57. ozhillbilly says:

    P.S. I do have two different neighbors that I will likely turn away. One probably wouldn’t ask anyway but the second will.

  58. The answers are really too vague. I would help those that have at least made some plans and are willing to work with me to protect the neighborhood, but I will not help someone that sits around doing nothing expecting others to take care of them.

  59. I live on a 10 acre block about 15 miles from the city, so we are somewhat rural. As are all of our neighbors, we are on rain catchment tank water supply and septic tank sewage, so water self sufficient. Our place is set up to be gravity fed, but our neighbors require pumps for their water, so we are better off than them. We also have solar water heating, so the showers would be at our place. But one neighbor has chickens and a huge vege garden, and another has loads of farm equipment and knowledge. The ones over the back have big tractors, and milking cows. Another has a generator, which we could all share to keep our freezers cold. None of this is prepping as such, but if we all stick together, we could ride out a crisis for quite a while.

    So I voted yes, but I think they would help us more than we could help them!

    • Kiwi Sue,

      “None of this is prepping as such”?

      You underestimate yourself. Being a survivalist living in a cave with a stack of MRE’s and guns and a boat load of ammo, is the stuff of dime novels. What you have is a MAG (Mutual Assistance Group), which in the old days was known as a community. This lady is the essence of real prepping. People with skills and equipment you lack who you can count on, and the ability for you to provide the same to them.

      Prepping as such is not only the three B’s, but community, which looks like what you have going for you.

  60. Nearly all of my neighbors have animals and gardens and we already share and help each other out.

  61. Texas Nana says:

    Yes, We will help our neighbors. First my husband has lived here since 1961, knows most everyone, including the “new” people. Second, don’t cut off your nose to spite your face. We own a welder and know how to use it, neighbor has a saw mill it needs some welding work done, who do you think he is going to come to for help.
    Both of our folks lived through the depression, the men who rode the rails knew there were houses that were marked that they could trade a days labor for a meal. DH grandfather never knew how their house was marked but was told that it was. If you gave him a fair days work, he saw to it that you didn’t leave hungry, and no they were not wealthy, but they always had a garden.
    If someone comes to our home looking for something for nothing they can forget it.

    • Texas Nana,
      I love stories like this. To hear about what actually happened, and how civil and charitable folks can be even in crisis.
      Thank you. Do you have any more stories like this to share?

  62. I will help you.

    I will not carry you.

  63. I will help to the point where I feel I am doing too much for them
    First and foremost my family comes first!!!
    Each of us has something to offer.

  64. I want to help in a way that does not expose my family to risk.

  65. azurevirus says:

    No, will not help others that either from lack of forsight ,ignorance or just plain dont believe in prepping..exceptions would be family, I believe in keeping a low profile as far as my prepping goes

  66. Uncle Charlie says:

    Local disaster, sure. National or world wide disaster I will be working my way to my bop where I have no neighbors.

  67. Yes, I will help my neighbors – always have and always will.

  68. PGCPrepper says:

    I don’t believe a lot of us will do as we say we’ll do without actually facing the situation; situations are variable. A lot of good hearted folks and some good christians or believers here so the obvious right answer is to help neighbors or family but when faced with a serious scenario, I don’t think I can honestly say because I’ve never been tested so my answer to such a hypothetical would be based on what I would hope to do. The world is full of unlikely heroes and the world is full of folks who run in the face of a challenge (self-preservation).

  69. Candy In Nebraska says:

    I would help the neighbors if need be. They have helped me and DH more then once when we had issues. So we do not mind helping in return.

  70. My answer was “YES” and there is almost always exceptions whether the answer is “yes” or “no”. My situation may be a little different than most of you cause due to circumstances beyond my control and God’s hand about 12 years ago my wife and I had to move to another state to keep my job. That means we are in a state where we have no children with us and no other relatives either. Now we are old and basically by ourselves. My daughter is about 300 miles away and my son about 500 miles. I said all that to say this…. my wife and I will help whoever and however many we can help. About the only reason I can see at this time not to help anyone is if that person or persons is a threat to our lives. Now some of you may say that helping anyone can be a threat to our lives. Well, that may be but I will share what I can.
    I doubt that neither of my children will be able to make it up here to our house and with my wife and I being over 60 and not in that good of health, if the worst of scenarios unfolds I really doubt that we would make it more than 6 mos to a year anyway. So my plan is to share until there is no more to share. Foolish plan? Maybe. Unrealistic? Maybe. It’s just the way we are.

    Oh, and my neighbors? I doubt that any of them have more than a day or two of any food or other supplies and probably no clue about what could happen shortly. A while back I just casually tried to get one of them to thinking… I told her when you are grocery shopping and you pick up a can of beans, get two. Her reply… we don’t eat beans. The point was missed completely. But, I will still help her and her family as much as I can.

  71. Both neighbors on either side we’d help; we know them and they’re decent people. The bullys across the street I’d help with muscle and advice but they’re already very good at hustling so they know nothing about me or what I may have prepared. I would keep a distance from them.
    The biggest thing I’d want, tho, would be to get in contact with my church family and fellow preppies and make sure they’re okay and on their feet. It would be important to establish safe community quickly. There would be more resources in every way.
    That said, I’m not sure how I’d say no to someone who needed to eat. I’m pretty sure I’d have to mean it. I’ve met some predators and those guys see help as character flaws to be exploited – I guess I’d learn fast to mean NO.

  72. It would depend on the type of disaster, whether it was local or national, what kind of help was needed and for how long. If I could assist a neighbor with something that doesn’t include disclosing my preps, perhaps I would help. Otherwise, not a chance.
    Once you offer someone your preps, what’s to stop them from coming back for more? All it takes is one person to spread the word about what you have stored, and everything you have could be gone very quickly.

  73. Son of Liberty says:

    I would help them, but not provide their total support. My priorities would be 1) myself and my immediate family; 2) my friends who are on board (even partially) with my efforts to prep; and 3) my neighbors.

    I recognize I may be the one with my preps who may ‘save’ our community, and/or they may be the one(s) who save my bacon. Most likely, it is us as we work together in community who will be the ‘salvation’ of each other.

    No man is an island, no man stands alone.

  74. Can’t think of time when I wouldn’t help my neighbors. I live in a rural area and its just something we have always done. When it snows we help each other plow the driveways. When hurricanes fall trees on the roads we go out with chainsaws and tractors and make a path to the main road. When the electric gets knocked out we share our generator to provide showers and water, especially during those long outages (days). Its christian, not to say I wouldn’t keep a watchful eye on some, but then again, all those I know are doing the same.

    • what if someone you don’t know comes up to you with hand out? need to consider ahead of time what we would do in that case and any more we can think of. have a plan, maybe even a rule. tough decisions.

  75. Backwoods Prepper says:

    My answer is yes I live 1/2 mile up the side of a mountain. There are 4 houses up here, next door ML/FL 100 yards away BL/SL with their 3 toddlers. The other neighbors are an ederly couple in their 70s their son lives at the bottom of the mountain. I am sure if its anything other than a natural disaster they would go to his house.I will help my family and them as I have prepared for it. I have bought extra food and I have enough firearms and ammo that everyone will have one. If it is a SHTF situation I have made plans to cut the mountain road off by falling as many trees as it takes. I have a big enough garden and livestock that includes 6 pigs a breeding pair and 4 meat hogs. 8 American Chinchilla meat rabbits 2 bucks 6 does. 2 roosters and 10 hens. with a little management I can expand in no time so we should be ok. And we are also backed up to 6000 acre land company property.

  76. I am surrounded by neighbors that take lavish vacations and are always buying new cars and expensive toys for their kids. The whole while I’m learning how to plant things that can provide sustenance and building henhouses and digging my own well. My wife and i have one vehicle and rarely spend money that doesn’t somehow benifit our long term survival or increase our self sufficiency. It would be a very difficult thing to do,but we would help our sheeple neighbors in exchange for effort or labor on their part.

  77. We will help for an immediate disaster, such as a tornado, etc. Help clean up, bring a meal, that type of stuff.

    If it is a long term SHTF, that changes things. We are in a neighborhood where everyone keeps to themselves, including us. We have vacant farms right next to us, one foreclosure that has been trashed beyond repair and one across the street that the land was divided and the house/barns left with a lousy 2 acres. Neither has sold. Having vacant houses will be a liability because you do not know who will squat in them. Also, 2/3 of the neighbors are related to each other. We, and the other non-relative neighbors, have always been treated as outsiders, even after 30+ years. If we could move, we would. We absolutely would not reveal our stores to anyone in this neighborhood. Would help out with beans, rice and canned soups but not much beyond that. We would act as if WE were in need or hardly making it to protect ourselves.

  78. I thought helping my rural neighbors would help me as well.

    You see, hunting for food in a group increases the chance of bagging some meat that will be shared. Teaching what edible plants are available to my neighbors increases our gathering efforts to share our finds, they may be able to teach me a thing or two. Having a neighborhood watch for theives and undesirables increases the safety of the group, while others are away finding resources for survival. The story of “Stone Soup” works in communities. Everyone adds something different to the pot what others don’t have and it feeds everyone.

    Ignoring the community around you and being an isolationist will leave you vunerable to breakins, out of the loop of hat is going on during the disaster, and not helping neighbors will leave you with no help when you need it most.

    The only exception I see is if you have bad neighbors, and I have had them.–those who have assulted people, threatened to kill or do harm, and those who have broken into homes to steal. I would leave them out but include good ones.

  79. I would help my neighbors as much as possible, obviously not to the detriment of the family.

    So many commenters are missing the long term view of their lives. They are not thinking that pretty much all disasters are short term in nature. You live in a neighborhood for years or decades. A disaster lasts for days or a couple weeks (with rare exception). Which response is going to help your neighborhood and your relationship with your neighbors for the decades to come?

    You can have the “go screw” attitude. This will most likely alienate you from other neighbors for the rest of your/their life as residents there. It will cause a rift in the neighborhood. If those neighbors are malicious instead of just ignorant, it will also cause you future pain as they cause grief for years to come to ‘get back’ at you long after the disaster has passed.

    You can employ the “here, let me help and show you what being prepared can do for all of us” behavior. This will cause some people to ‘see the light’ and decide to prep for themselves which will strengthen the future of the whole neighborhood.

    There will always be the truly helpless, those who are ignorant (dictionary definition, here), those who are intentionally helpless because they can get away with it, and those like-minded. Choose different tactics and approaches for each, but help them out.

    After the short term problem is gone, which will help you, your position and influence in the community, and your mission more, being known as the selfish jerk that had what he needed but wouldn’t help out, or being the stand-up guy that really stepped up and helped out when his neighbors needed it?

    I’m not saying to do everything for everyone, or give everything away. Just help out as you can and spread the message.

  80. carlo n jacki says:

    we have told our neighbors… the one we care about, the reasons for and given them the tools to prepare to provide for their families. we are planning for our family, 18 people. everyone else has the same opportunity to prep that we do. if they choose to stick their heads in the sand, they can live ( or die ) with the consequences of their choices

  81. Of course I will help them. I don’t judge other people based on whether or not they prep, whether or not they’re nice, whether or not their chosen lifestyle aligns with mine. People are people, and I am not without sin so I won’t be throwing any stones. I will do whatever I can, because I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t. What good is keeping myself alive if the rest of that life is riddled with regret that perhaps someone died because I was too cowardly to help them?

    • amen ! Nanet….

    • Nanet
      I agree that you must help everyone you can, it would be very difficult to judge which people are worthy of our help.When a disaster happens you will need everyone you can to stick together, wether short term,you will have to live near these people when it’s over,or long term,you may need them to survive. We would start with a clean slate, and help them untill they show they’re not trust worthy.Who knows someone may surprise you, that you didn’t like. When the very survival of the country,or even humans as a species, is the goal it’s all aboard.

    • Nanet,

      I’m a bit confused what is “whatever I can”. If I have a months supply of food for my wife myself and our two children, should I give half of it to my neighbors knowing my children may starve in two weeks? Should I split it four ways with three other families I care for and know we may go hungry in a week? If I wanted to be as non-judgemental as you I could just stack everything on my front lawn with a sign – “Food please take if you need.” And maybe my family would be hungry after one day.

      Isn’t there some responsibility to provide for innocent children that are counting on you?

      The bible says “turn the other cheek” how far am I to go with this. If someone murders my son or takes the food from their mouth should I offer my other son as well?

      The only thing I can figure is you don’t have others counting on you, or you haven’t lived very long faced with people that take without giving, or even asking. Maybe your reward in heaven will be great, and I will be burning in hell for protecting my two boys. But, If that is truly Jehova’s idea of justice maybe I just belong in the sulfur…

      • Mike, as far as food if in short suppy for your family, I mentioned in my post making “Stone Soup” . Say you only have onions, your neighbor only has chicken, your other neighbor only has carrots, and your other neighbor further down has a big pot and a cooker with fuel. You make a community pot to feed every neighbor including your children, where no one by themselves alone could make this delicious and nutritious soup. All it cost you were a couple onions, and you got meat and vegatables in a soup in return. That’s how you help your neighbors.

        You don’t sacrifice your kids. Jesus warned anyone harming children said it would be better if an anchor tied around his neck and cast into the sea.

        In my younger years, I was assulted for no reason, probably for existing. Turning my cheek the second time to be hit again (and I was hit again), I did what the good Lord asked of me,… but the third hit I blocked and defended myself. God must have had plans for me so I was given unbelieveable strength to overcome my assailant. That person with a bad reputation of hurting others changed after that and never beat people again, and I forgave her. Have faith, hope and love. The greatest of these is love.(used in action, not just words)

        • Tactical G-Ma says:

          I honestly believe that if TSHTF, we may isolate ourselves for a while. But in order to survive we will need to develop alliances and/or symbiotic relationships with people nearby.

          Your stone soup reminds me of meals my brother and I used to prepare when we shared an apartment right after college. Usually mac and cheese was our standard fare but I remember making curry gravy and onions poured over toast. Back in the day we were too proud to beg or dumpster dive but we did appreciate a meal at the local soup kitchen from time to time. But that was a different world.

  82. I’ve voting yes, and as most here there would be conditions. One neighbor I would run off if they set foot on my property. They other I would help clear debris, board up windows, etc. After that it’s all for my family.

  83. Caio César says:

    Well, here on Brazil we don’t have many disasters, like hurricanes, or earthquakes, but I think than in the event of happens something than causes a change on our living dramatically, like a SHTF, we will need cooperate to overcome the new (or old) obstacles.

    I can do some things, linked with biotechnology, and I know a little of agriculture and livestock (I was raised on a farm), plus some other stuff, but my neighbours know other things, usable in a restructuring of a small comunity, as mine.

    Sorry about my english, I don’t speak your language very well, but I’m trying to be better.

    Great blog, great job!

    • Encourager says:

      Caio César, Welcome to the Wolf Pack. Have not seen you post before. Being prepared crosses any state or national line. It is just the smart thing to do.

      Ran across this Bible verse: Proverbs 28:19 “In the house of the wise man are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has.”

      Thought it was a great prepping verse! (Among others!)

      • Caio César says:

        Thanks for the reception. I discovered the Survivalist no long time ago, and I’m liking than I found here. Many people think that preparedness is a foolish deal, but I believe this is the right path to follow, like the bible said.

        I hope to contribute with anything I can do, and learn more with you, guys.

        • Encourager says:

          Caio Cesar, please tell us what the economy is like in Brazil and also what the crime situation is. Are you able to conceal carry a hand gun? What are the laws there as to private ownership of guns? I am just curious, as many here are, also.

          Do you have a garden? Are you filling up a pantry with food and supplies for the future? What are you doing about water? See, full of questions!!

          • Caio César says:

            we have an economy based on agropecuary, mining (both for exportation), and manufactured products, plus some other sectors that make us a emergent country. For this reason, we don’t feel the effect of the crisis like other countries.

            However, the administration of nation and the tax burden are our problem. Corruption (for me) is the great problem of Brazil, and this is one of the causes of the crime here.

            The crime situation is another problematic in my country, because affects all the social classes. The things are changing, people are becoming more informed, but drug traffic and other problems still remain in the big cities.

            On the subject of carrying weapons, well, the things are complicated. Here, due to adoption of the institute of disarmament, carry a gun is a risk. Through legal means, carry weapons is exclusive for police, army, and law agents, or people than has their lives on risk constantly, besides hunters that hunt for subsistence.

            I do not belong to any of these categories, and I don’t have 25 old yet, so, the only way to carry a gun (even if it is a handgun) is out of law, and I can be arrested, or worse, if the cops catch me. Hide a gun is difficult, police raids are common, so I’d rather not take that risk.

            And talking about me, lets answer the other questions. First of all, I don’t live in amazonia, but in the northeast of Brazil, in Pernambuco. Currently I live in Recife, the capital and largest city of my state, but my family live in São Vicente Férrer, a little town in the countryside.

            Over there, my father has a farm, with 8 ha (80.000 m2), two weirs, plus a potable water fount. We cultivate grapes on our property, and other vegetables, like beans, corn, cassava, and vegetable crops. Furthermore, we have fruit trees, like cashew, jackfruit, mango, and some of native fruits, like jabuticaba, araçá, graviola, ingá, seriguela and other. My grandmother (a 85 years old lady, but it appears to have 60), cultivates some condiments, like chili, coriander, and green onions, and some medicinal plants.

            We also have goats, cows, and chickens, than give us milk, eggs and meat, so, I believe than we can survive a small problem, but for long term, we don’t have preparation yet (actually, I am the only concerned with preparation from future disasters, and I’m beginning now).

            Well, this is a little explanation, the best I could give for now, and I would like some advices. The Survivalist is helping very much, and day after day I learn something new, so, what do you do to keep yourself prepared? About defense, what you can suggest for me?

          • Caio César,
            First of all, for the non-metric folks, 80000 square meters is about 19.75 acres, which depending on the soil conditions and number of people being supported would in my opinion be a really great start at self reliance, especially in the food production area. I suspect a lot of folks on this forum would love an almost 20 acre established homestead.

            With firearms laws being what they are in your country, I would suggest you consider what has been done historically by folks in that situation, and learn to use unobtrusive tools at hand as self defense tools, by learning to use them and practicing until you’re proficient. The Okinawa nunchaku and tonfa were both farm implements that were developed into weapons. Any shaft, from a pencil or dowel rod to a longer shovel handle can be used as a weapon with practice. Known as a Bō, jō, or hanbō (half bō), there are various video and books that can give you a start in trading with all of these make shift tools when used as weapons.

            Although I’m not acquainted specifically with Brazilian Martial arts, I know that several exist, and training in one of these might be available and useful to you.

            Good luck, and

          • You might also consider a good bow for some distance.

  84. Your English is fine. And you make my point that long term we need each other.

    • Caio César says:

      Thanks. For a short time, the things can be solved by myself, or my family. But for long time, the help of other people is necessary.

      Therefore, the help of our neighbours is very important, at least for me.

  85. We live in a farming community where most have gardens & can & freeze the surplus. It is our tradition to help each other. Your tractor is stuck…sure I’ll bring mine over to pull you out… you had a carrot failure, I’ve got extra have some of mine. Therefore we will be helping out as we can but few here would expect us to do without to help them. There would definitely be limits to what we could do especially for those who refuse to prepare or help with other things. I have begun saving a number of kinds of seeds so if seed orders don’t get through I can at least have some seeds to share so people have a chance to help themselves.

  86. Tactical G-Ma says:

    I cannot say exactly what I will do. DH and I will evaluate how much or how little we will do for others. Like Canadagal, we live in a rural ag community. Our family is not just blood but our church family, neighbors, friends, etc.

    Yesterday I watched the Nat’l Geo documentary of the Bubonic Plague or black death. It is estimated that 1/3 of the worlds population was wiped out.

    During the event, the wealthy headed to their vacation or safe homes. Others huddled behind closed doors.

    When the disease died out, serfs and peons took over the homes and lands of the dead. The wealthy were left to take care of themselves. Debauchery and uncivilized behavior was rampant. Mercenaries worked for the wealthy and when they didn’t have work, they took what they needed. Small micro-communities evolved and everyone had his or her own version of religion or not. The sense of loss, the grief, and survivors guilt was huge because so many died. As a result, many were not sound of mind.

    We need to look at history and how human nature reacts to widespread disaster. Only then can we get some idea of what will occur. I definitely want to be a part of my community but as farmers, ranchers, hunters, and tradesmen, we will have a different dynamics than an urban or suburban community. I am most concerned with the wealthy or successful professionals and how they will react to having to provide for themselves in a different reality.

    There is and will be lawlessness in my community. That will have to be dealt with. Over all, I am very satisfied with my BIL and neighbors for miles in
    all directions with very few exceptions.

    I don’t want to survive if I have to do so without conscience.

    • Tactical G-Ma,
      My entire MAG are either wealthy &/or successful professionals, who nevertheless see what the future has in store and are also preppers who are planning for the future that may be very different than the present. Even being extremely wealthy (which we are not) doesn’t help when all of your wealth cannot purchase the everyday necessities.

  87. Leonard G. Anderson says:

    Depends on how nice they ask. I would help with roads and clearing certainly but we do not have much food. We do have water. Been here 6 years in downtown and only get waves from the neighbors so not sure how much help the unfriendly get. I suspect the ones pitching in will help each other.

  88. I voted yes. I will help. I will not, however, run a soup kitchen for bums. I am CERT trained, so I can & will help in the event of a local disaster. I can render first aid, and will to the best of my ability. I won’t be used, or walked on. Will I take in strangers, no. We are too few to risk it. Will I assist my neighbors, certainly. As a believer in God, I must aid the helpless. That does not mean I will enable the lazy, shiftless, bums.
    (soap box now available)

  89. We have some really good neighbors that we will share with as long as they’re willing to do their part. We have other neighbors that we will keep in out sites so to speak.

  90. OregonMike says:

    It’s going to be much harder to subsist as a loner. Shared skills and provisions amongst a community (large family, neighbors, other planned group) will add tremendous help in defending against roaming ‘takers’ and worse. If you have animals and/or gardens, you will be a target. It would help to have someone in charge of bartering, others for cooking, gardening, animal care, many for defense, etc. We have not talked directly with our neighbors about prepping but have friends who will be available and interested in being a ‘survival community’ which will address physical, mental and spiritual wellness.

    • OregonMike says:

      By the way, have you thought about body disposal if it comes to that from having to exercise your defense plan?

      • Oregon Mike, I agree. And I have brought up the subject of body disposal but it still needs to be addressed. If you have the knowledge of that subject, please share?

  91. Eddie Slovik says:

    I voted NO thinking primarily of food and with the arrogant retired couple across the road in mind. Our nearest neighbors are miles away scattered over a former cattle ranch.

    As others have said, I do not plan to be a soup kitchen. I’ve got a pretty good supply of extra food and staples on hand, ammo, toiletries, tools, extra cans of gas, propane stored, but there is still so much I could still do. With four handicapped kids (three under ten years old) I am putting them, my wife and step-daughter as my 1st, 2nd, and 3rd priority — period.

    I am hoping that my fellow rural homesteaders could form a mutual protection arrangement and perhaps trade skills. I could always use another healthy male around for lifting, building, and holding the other end of the beam.

    Otherwise, the ones out here who haven’t prepared and bring nothing to table but their appetites will get a ride into town (with whatever they can carry) for a drop-off at whatever government facilty gets set-up for the helpless and unprepared.

  92. Ugh. We need to move. Working on it. If still here when things go bad, we will likely be only one of maybe three houses prepared. If long term, we will need to leave to go to a family member’s place who will need us, our preps and our ability to defend him, his preps and work his farm.

    Having said that, we are working on moving to and settling in a small nearby community. At that point we will definitely begin working on getting to know our neighbors and become a valuable part of that community.

    Personally, I could never let a child starve. I will do what I can to provide medical assistance, protection, security, and share the preps we have set aside for charity. But I will not disclose the extent of our larder to anyone outside our trusted circle.

  93. The Zebra says:

    I would do WHAT I CAN to help neighbors, keeping my own family’s safety paramount. A stretch of winter storms with power outages, for example, would not strain my preps too badly. In that case, I’d help provide food and shelter to others if needed. I could do that without compromising the safety of my own family, so I would be as helpful to others as possible. (Such an event should certainly create new preppers, and would cause some of the mockers to decide that prepping isn’t so dumb after all. My whole community would benefit from THAT change of mindset, right?) On the other hand, in the event of a major economic or political collapse, which would likely last years, I would not be able to extend much assistance without jeopardizing my own family’s supplies. In that case, I won’t be answering the door…

  94. Yes I will help some of my neighbors to a point. Although two of my neighbors are already prepared themselves, one more than we are I think. The ones I will help are the old woman accross the cul de sac. She is old and needs the help. Plus in a “situation'” her wisdom may be worth something. (Yup I am making assumptions and generalizations here. My grandma was) and the lady on the other side of us. Her husband is deployed right now and when I was deployed I would want neighbors/friends to look after my family.

  95. It depends on what kind of disaster it is . The question is if we help
    people then how can we get them to leave and will they tell others?
    I probably would leave some products to help others out by our pond,near our gate,
    with a ladle for drinking water.
    THese are very difficult questions that I dont believe I will know the snswer to until it happens.At the current time we always
    help others .
    Mama J you are eminating a beautiful spirit of kindness-may God bless you abundantly. Arlene and family

  96. I said NO with a maybe in there…… If they have a skill set I’m lacking and I don’t flame you the second your in range. Those that said YES please send me your address I’ll send them your way.

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