Guest Post: Prepping With Neighbors

4:04 PM

I'd like to thank Dave from Prepping Plans for being a guest poster today at The Nerdy Survivalist. Check out what Dave has to say about prepping with the people around you! Dave is also the author of Prepping for Pennies on the Dollar, which I will be reviewing next week sometime. 

Surviving Together with Your Neighbors

One of the biggest concerns for preppers is keeping their plans secret. But, no matter how good your OPSEC is, chances are, there are people who are going to know what you are up to. Friends, family members and even your neighbors will see signs of what you are doing. To the curious, that will be enough to cause them to figure it out.

Even if your OPSEC is perfect and people don't figure out that you're prepping, how well do you think you'll be able to keep the secret from your neighbors, when they're starving and you're not? It's one thing to keep the secret while you're prepping; but it's something totally different to keep it when things go to pot and you find yourself in a survival situation. People are eventually going to figure out that you're better off than they are, and when they do, they'll probably come knocking on your door.

This puts you in a difficult situation, one that most preppers try to avoid facing. What do you do when those people start knocking on your door? Do you feed them and then not have enough for your own family or do you tell them you can't help them and gain their animosity? Are you risking attack by not helping them?

I'd like to propose a third alternative to you, that of co-opting your neighbors and making them part of your neighborhood survival team. This is easiest if you can do it ahead of time, turning them into preppers too. But the reality is that you probably won't be able to do that. Most won't want to listen.

So, that leaves co-opting them after the disaster hits, a much easier and more costly move. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't do it. The thing is, you're either going to end up working with your neighbors or end up fighting with them. So, you may as well try to work with them.

Organize Your Neighborhood

When a disaster hits, most of your neighbors are going to be wandering around, wondering what happened. Everyone will be looking for answers and nobody is going to have any. Some of them will be expecting the government to step in to help, but you and I know how poor the government's track record of that is. People will be looking for leadership and if the government doesn't give it to them, someone else will need to.

That's where you can step in. Organize a neighborhood meeting and get everyone together to talk about what has happened. Tell them what you know about what has happened and what you know about what has to be done. Don't be a fear monger, but paint as clear a picture as you can. Some of your neighbors won't want to accept what you say, but others will. Start with those.

Organize the families that you have, so that you can help each other out. Find out what skills people have, so that those skills can be put to use. Avoid the subject of what resources they have, because you can't honestly ask that while hiding what you have stockpiled. Remember, you're going to accomplish much more working together, than you can accomplish separately.

Be willing to offer your expertise to the community effort. You're probably the only one who has taken the time to learn survival skills. Fine, those skills are valuable. Your willingness to contribute them to the neighborhood is worth something and everyone else should recognize that. If they don't, you can simply back off and not help them out.

The Food Issue

The biggest issue you're going to encounter is coming up with enough food to feed everyone. Somebody is going to have the idea of pooling resources; probably some liberal who doesn't have anything in their home. But if you try to feed your neighbors, like you're feeding your family, you're going to need some major food stocks on hand. But that doesn't mean that you can't feed them at all. That's actually the one thing they are going to be expecting from you, more than anything else.

So, stock up on rice and beans. Compared to other food items, those are cheap. Then, when they come around asking for food, you have something to give them. They don't have to know that your family is eating better than that; all they need to know is that you're giving them something to eat. In addition to rice and beans, you should also stock up on heirloom seeds. Don't just buy enough for your needs; buy enough to get your neighbors' gardens going as well. If you can get everyone in your neighborhood growing food, you're going to be much more successful in feeding everyone; and you won't have to use your food stocks to do it.

The Water Issue

Right alongside food, there's the issue of water. We all know that it take a gallon of clean water per person per day to cover drinking and cooking needs. If your city's water goes down, you're all going to need water. Since you're the neighborhood prepper, you're the one who knows what water sources are available.

This is another place where you can help our your neighborhood, putting them in debt to you. Organize water hauling teams to get water from your local river or lake. Your contribution to this will be in filtering the water; that saves you from having to haul water. For every gallon of water that you purify for someone else, they have to give you two gallons for your use.

Of course, not all the water they need will have to be purified, just the water for drinking and cooking. The water they use for cleaning can be normal river water. They may complain about that at first, but they'll quickly get used to it.

What Do You Get Out of This?

You might be wondering why you should go through all this effort for your neighbors. You could stay in your home, eating your stockpile and ignore their plight. That's true, but there is some risk involved in doing so. Your neighbors may just decide to organize without you and come to take what you have. That won't help you any and may end up as a tragedy for everyone concerned.

However, if you help out your neighbors, organizing them and offering your skills to them, you can get something out of it. First of all, you will become the natural leader of your neighborhood. That's more of a responsibility than a blessing, but it can work into being a blessing. On top of that, there are two areas where your neighbors can truly help you out:
· Mutual defense
· Manual labor

Those two areas will make your survival all that much easier; and there will probably be people in your neighborhood who will have useful skills that you don't have, which can help you to survive as well. Like anything else that's a team effort, working together with your neighbors to survive, even if they aren't preppers, will ultimately help everyone out.

Those two areas will make your survival all that much easier; and there will probably be people in your neighborhood who will have useful skills that you don't have, which can help you to survive as well. Like anything else that's a team effort, working together with your neighbors to survive, even if they aren't preppers, will ultimately help everyone out. 

Dave is a 52 year old survivalist; father of three; with over 30 years of survival experience. He started young, learning survival the hard way, in the school of hard knocks. Now, after years of study, he's grey-haired and slightly overweight. That hasn't dimmed his interest in survival though. If anything, Dave has a greater commitment to survival than ever, so that he can protect his family. You can learn more about Dave on his site,

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  1. Excellent post. I am on the condo board and onot a few friends know I prep, but I've been toying with the idea of hosting an emergency preparedness info session for my neighbors as a wedge into the whole neighborhood prep thing....