Include basics like band-aids, material for tourniquets, eye pads and cloth compresses, safety pins, thermometers, compass, antibiotics, and painkillers. Place them in a waterproof container, preferably something flexible. It conforms to the inside of a backpack or duffel bag and uses less space this way. A double-zippered plastic bag is one option to consider.
What if you have to take in a pregnant woman or a parent with a small child? You may have to go looking for baby formula. What if your mother’s prescription medications are lost or destroyed? You may have to go looking for replacement meds. What if a crucial piece of gear is damaged? What if you need parts for your shelter or vehicle? These are just a few possibilities off the top of my head. There are dozens of situations you won’t think of until you’re in them.
Unfortunately that doesn’t translate well to larger scale disasters. Opportunistic looters and thugs come out to do what they do best, and if things are bad enough that society breaks down totally the normal people will go to extreme lengths to protect themselves and their families. That’s what we usually talk about when we say you should be prepared.
The term "survival kit" may also refer to the larger, portable survival kits prepared by survivalists, called "bug-out bags" (BOBs), "Personal Emergency Relocation Kits" (PERKs) or "get out of Dodge" (GOOD) kits, which are packed into backpacks, or even duffel bags. These kits are designed specifically to be more easily carried by the individual in case alternate forms of transportation are unavailable or impossible to use.
Say you're at work and a terrorist attack occurs. Roads are closed to any and all traffic but you only want to get home - even if that means walking. You may not want to grab your full on family pack in the car or you may not even be able to get to it. But you just want a light kit to get you through. How far is it to get home from wherever you may be? This get home kit should provide for 1-3 nights of traveling on foot till you make it home.
As Douglas wrote in his reply “It’s the simple will to survive. Call it grit, call it faith, call it down right stubbornness. I’ve heard about many times where a man has all that he should need to survive a situation, but is found dead because he didn’t think that he could. And on the other hand, I’ve heard stories about men who have cut off their leg and survived, just because they wouldn’t give up.
I live here in southern WV. Every county here is prepared to block all roads into and out of the county with backhoes, coal trucks, dump trucks, etc and post armed guards. Nearly everyone hear is armed. People here are poor anyhow and know very well how to ‘get by’ on little to nothing. Enough coal could be dumped along the road to heat and cook all that we need, probably in one day, for every comunity. Fresh drinking water runs out of nearly every mountain around. Many people, including myself, have gardens and give away most of what they grow. My compost pile provides most of the plants I grow because the seeds from the cucumbers, tomatoes, potatoe peels, cantalope etc just sprout naturally and I just plant them. Living where I do ain’t ALL bad! Esp when TSHTF!!!
Matches are fine, but they can get easily ruined by water or even humidity and mildew. It is best to go with what is called a permanent match, or a flint or magnesium rod. The permanent match is an enclosed “match” that stores inside a metal container and lights up when removed from the container. The flint and magnesium rods, when scraped with a steel object such as a knife blade, create sparks that ignite dry tinder and paper. In the eventuality that you do not have any tinder or paper, cotton balls soaked with petroleum jelly work exceptionally well.
If possible, each teen and adult should put their own multi-purpose tool, poncho, flashlight with extra batteries, first aid kit and fishing gear in their own backpack or bug out bag. While the chances of such a disastrous event may seem like science fiction, there are many conditions and situations that suggest the distinct potential for the worst case scenario.
Other small kits are wearable and built into everyday carry survival bracelets or belts. Most often these are paracord bracelets with tools woven inside. Several tools such as firestarter, buckles, whistles and compass are on the exterior of the gear and smaller tools are woven inside the jewelry or belt and only accessible by taking the bracelet apart.
Survival kits, in a variety of sizes, contain supplies and tools to provide a survivor with basic shelter against the elements, help him or her to keep warm, meet basic health and first aid needs, provide food and water, signal to rescuers, and assist in finding the way back to help. Supplies in a survival kit normally contain a knife (often a Swiss army knife or a multi-tool), matches, tinder, first aid kit, bandana, fish hooks, sewing kit, and a flashlight.