There are many reasons for emergencies in home daycare. Your water or electricity can go off, storms can come, and you need to have a plan.

Why Prepare for Emergencies?

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There are many reasons to prepare for emergencies in home daycare. Your water or electricity can go off, storms can come, and you need to have a plan. It’s an important part of running a home daycare.

There are many reasons for emergencies in home daycare. Your water or electricity can go off, storms can come, and you need to have a plan.

You never know what could come up and being prepared ahead of time with the supplies you need could save you a lot of trouble. Have you ever heard the term, luck favors the prepared? Do you know why people say that? It’s because when you have things in order for just in case times, they are easier for you.

Emergency preparedness checklist

When I think of prepping, I see images in my head of all kinds of zombie apocalypse preppers. I am not that hardcore, but it definitely does not hurt prepare for emergencies. Think of all the things that can happen. If you are responsible for a group of kids like I am, it’s even more important to be prepared for emergencies in home daycare. 

Water emergencies

Your water can go off because the electricity goes out. It can go off because your well runs dry or gets contaminated. Your pump can go out. We are on city water here and we have water outages on occasion. The water quality can become undrinkable. There is any number of things that can go wrong with the system you have to get water.

Do you have a way to purify water for drinking should your house water be unusable? Do you have any water stored to flush the toilet with or drink if your water were to be out all day or even longer? Be sure to use food grade containers. Don’t use milk jugs because they degrade over time and cannot be sterilized completely. 

 I have always had stored water on hand for emergencies in home daycare and I have been able to use it when my water hose was broken to water my plants. I have also used it to help my mail carrier when her truck was overheating and she needed to fill it with water.

It has come in handy multiple times, and if I ever had to evacuate for any reason, I could just grab it and go. Storing water is super important in being prepared for emergencies. Click here to learn more about how to store water for emergencies

extra water stored for emergencies in home daycare

Loss of electricity

Studies have shown the electric grid to be very vulnerable. I’m not a doom gloomer or naysayer, but I’d say having a total electric home like I do is cause for being prepared for power outages. We have them all the time here in Oklahoma because of our storms.


If your power goes out in the heat of summer, how will you keep yourself cool with no fans or air conditioning? What about heat in the winter? Do you have candles you can light for lighting? Are your flashlights stocked with fresh batteries? Do you have a lantern? How can you cook or keep yourself warm?

Do you have a generator to keep your refrigerator and freezer from being off too long and losing all your food? Do you have a way to charge your phone? What about a weather radio to check on storms? Those are all good things to have to prepare for emergencies in home daycare. 

Flood emergencies

If there was a flood in your area, do you know what to do? Do you have an evacuation plan for floods, fires, or other threats? You need to have a plan made with your family. I have a home daycare, so I have plans mapped out for my daycare kids as well. Recently, we had a flood here.

During the flood, the levy at the end of my street that controls floodwaters was breached. The emergency preparedness workers for the city came to the door and said, the levy is breached, if it continues to fail any further, your house will be underwater in a matter of minutes, you should have a plan. This was one of my scariest emergencies in home daycare.

So I texted my kid’s parents and grabbed a bag and some supplies. I had bottles of water and granola bars at the ready, so I threw some of those in the bag. I added the kid’s information cards, all the cash I had in the house and my purse that has tons of important stuff.

Evacuation plan?

The kids were evacuated by their parents, and family friends. We just had to walk along the yards up next to the houses down the street to the corner and they were picked up by various parties. One mom had her car flooded out and damaged on the way in when the waters rushed super high all at once, but other than that, no one was harmed. It was scary, but the levy held up. They filled the breach with sandbags and the water went down.

These are the times when I’m glad I have everything organized and at hand. I could have evacuated with the kids with what I had in my bag and been fine for the rest of the day. I could have thrown some clothes in a bag and relocated somewhere in no time.

We have a plan for fires and the kids and I practice what to do. They know to get out, stay out, and don’t go back in. We know how to call 911. There is a place to meet and a plan to get there. They even know where to go if something happens to me during the fire. I prepare them for as much as I can. I hope they don’t ever need to know it, but if they do, it’s there.

Check out these fire safety lessons you can order and print out for teaching fire safety!

fire safety printable mock up

We practice their phone numbers and parents’ names. I have had two children become lost with a parent or other family member and they were able to be reunited with their parents because they knew their names and phone numbers. You can never be too prepared for emergencies in home daycare.

One child that was three years old was separated from her parents at the zoo and the zoo security was able to find them because she knew their names. Another child who was 2 went to another town on a field trip with an uncle and was forgotten there. He found a mom with small children, just like I had taught him and told her he was lost. She got the police and they were able to call his mom because he knew her phone number. It’s never too early to teach your children. Never.


Where we live in Oklahoma, we have tornados and thunderstorms. We practice our tornado drills monthly. Recently we had a tornado enter our town and it got real in here. I had to throw all the kids in the bathtub in the middle of nap. During my 21 years of childcare, we have only had to take cover 3 times, and this was the closest it ever was. Usually, I am not scared, I’m used to tornado warnings, but this time was a little unnerving.

Right now is a good time to think about storms in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. I know it’s on all of our minds because of what’s happening there.

emergency drill sheet for daycare with tornado, fire, smoke detector, carbon monoxide detector and fire extinguisher

Even though earthquakes are not storms, we need a plan to prepare for emergencies like those as well, don’t forget about that. Click on the link below to view our emergency evacuation procedure in childcare for Little Sprouts. business-policies-other


What would you do if you broke your arm and couldn’t do your job? Do you have sick leave from work? Do you have back up help if you have a home daycare that can help you if you break your foot or something and can no longer care for the kids for a short amount of time? What do you do to prepare for emergencies in home daycare?

Loss of employment

If you suddenly lost your job, do you have savings to cover your expenses when you don’t have income coming in? You should have 3-6 months’ worth of income saved for an interruption in paychecks. Do you have that? How could you start working toward that? Do you have supplies stored for times when income is lean? I always have food stored. I have a phobia about not being able to feed my kids, so I always buy food in bulk and have things on hand just in case.


What if you were to become super sick, do you have soup and crackers on hand to help nurse yourself back to health? I think it’s a good idea to store supplies for sicknesses, such as those things as well as diarrhea medicine, fever reducer, etc. I had a friend one time who was super sick and had to go to the store and get her own supplies. She threw up right in the grocery line while she was buying it. Thank goodness for a fast handed checker with a quick plastic bag for her.

What if you had a more serious, long-lasting illness? Do you and your family have plans in place to handle that? I hope so. It’s hard enough to worry about your loved one without having to worry about insurance or finances too. There are endless reasons to preapare for emergencies in home daycare

Food supply breakdown

What if the stores were suddenly unable to provide you with food? Do you know how to grow or find your own food? Do you have things stored for emergencies when you can’t get to the store? I think you should have at least two weeks’ worth of food and water available at all times. Everyone should have seeds and know how to grow their own food. Everyone should have some old-fashioned skills to help themselves if the need ever arises.

cabinet full of dry good pastas for emergencies

There are so many things that could happen in our world today that we would need to help ourselves from. Do you know how to hunt for food or trap animals? What about growing your own food? Do you know how to butcher and prepare animals for eating? What about making bread or other types of cooking that would save you and your family from starving? It’s a good idea to at least have a book handy with all of that information in case the internet should become disabled.

There are a number of scenarios that are possible that would require you to have some skills and knowledge. You should know how to start a fire, build a shelter, and get food for yourself and your kids should you ever need to. Being prepared for emergencies is not as crazy as you might think it sounds. I want to be able to help my family, my neighbors, my daycare families, and my friends should the need arise.

I don’t have a ton of skills, but I know some things and we could band together and all share the skills we have if that ever becomes a need. It’s a good idea to prepare for any emergency and help your friends and family prepare too. You never know when you might just need it! Prepare for emergencies in home daycare!

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  1. So many people don’t realize that it’s just the every day emergencies that impact us the most often. They can be quite annoying and frustrating if you don’t have what you need to make it through. We went fall without electric after I believe it was Hurricane Irene, we had nothing of what we needed for those few days and it was miserable!