Whether it's a tornado or drought, Purdue Extension has personnel geared to respond immediately with information and whatever resources they can bring to assist those affected. Purdue maintains an Extension Disaster Education Network, which is part of a national EDEN system. The concept was born several years ago to help Extension in various states respond quickly and in a coordinated way when major disasters strike one section of the country or another.
Steve Cain, Purdue Extension, coordinates the effort in Indiana. Cain is a former managing editor for Indiana Prairie Farmer magazine, and has worked with Purdue Ag Communications in various capacities for 25 years.
"We try to link together information so people in disasters or in other bad situations can find advice and help quickly," he says.
The EDEN site for Purdue currently has a special section for drought information. The information is split into categories for both homeowners and farmers and farm families. Various videos and other types of information are available on these sites.
Cain also realizes part of the fall-out from the drought may be the emotional toll it takes on farm families. He's looking into various ways to partner with other groups to offer resources to help in this area. Check out the website at www.ag.purdue.edu/extension/eden.
The EDEN concept kicked in heavily this spring when tornadoes struck southern Indiana. There is still information about the southern Indiana tornadoes on the EDEN site. You will also find Extension articles on how to prepare for such disasters, and what steps to take to help the entire family prepare for such a situation.
The website for EDEN also provides contact information if you have special questions. If you're facing a disaster, whether it's financial or directly related to drought, such as getting your livestock through the winter, be sure to consider the EDEN site at a resource.