How to prepare for the end of the world
Are you busy preparing for the apocalypse? Well, you're definitely not alone.
The number of preppers/homesteaders/survivalists across North America has risen dramatically in recent years, with estimates suggesting that there may be as many as 3 million preppers in the United States alone.
What do these people have in common? The belief that the world is becoming increasingly unstable in several different ways and that everyone needs to prepare now for more difficult years ahead.
And they're very serious, often spending tens of thousands of dollars in stockpiled supplies, survival training and practice runs.
Phil Burns, a co-founder of the American Preppers Network, advises beginning preppers to start by setting aside up to 20% of their income for preparations -- whether it goes toward supplies, emergency training classes or shelter.
"You wouldn’t hesitate to buy house insurance or life insurance to protect your family, and it’s kind of (like) doing the same thing," says Breanna Gray, the 23-year-old founder of a small prepper networking group in Ottawa that's affiliated with a much larger network with branches across the country.
However, she's an amateur compared to Allen Charron, the owner of Bug-Out Canada, a company that offers wilderness survival and self-defence courses, goes on regular practice runs and has, with likeminded friends, built several underground stockpiles with seven years worth of supplies.
But, if you want to see some serious preppers at work, tune into the National Geographic Channel’s popular series Doomsday Preppers. Among others, you'll meet Jeff Mann, who leads “the Colony,” a community of 25 preppers unified with the single purpose of surviving doomsday together.
Are preppers a little nuts? Or are they on to something? Have you taken any steps to provide for a real emergency?
By Gordon Powers, MSN Money