Dr. John Woods 03.28.17
One of the hot topics among preppers and survivalists is whether to go it alone, immediate family included or not, or to join forces with neighbors or another known entity. Obviously there are a host of pros and cons to either choice here, but what bears focus is to examine all the possibilities before you commit one way or the other.
On the TV series Fear the Walking Dead, one of the characters decides to split from his original group to go it alone. After nearly dying in the attempt, a group finds him wounded and brings him to a “camp” for recovery. This camp was known as The Colonia or colony.
Though the scenario depicted in this show would be starkly different than a choice to join a neighborhood group for a bug in option, the gathering of people with varying resources, skills, and security may be worth considering.
Going it alone or even with the wife and kids can be tough no matter what. You become solely dependent on yourselves for everything. While you may have planned well and stocked up, eventually some gaps may begin to show. It would be extremely difficult for say a family of four to produce water, food, personal hygiene, maintenance, repairs, and security during a bug in. Who does what? Who sleeps when? What are the divisions of labor and management?
A group situation lends assistance. Ideally there is a broad base of skills and talents. Together there could be access to shared supplies, gear, equipment, labor, and decision-making. Joint work projects can go quicker and often better. Just the social contact and human aspects can make surviving a SHTF a more endurable event.
What are the down sides to a Colonia? People. Personalities vary widely in groups and sometimes the dynamics can be hard to manage. Just think of your work situation, a ball team, civic club, or other group setting. Sometimes teams can work real well together, then other times it is a disaster. Before you join any group, assess their value to you and also what you can bring to the group. If you do not work well with others, then plan to go it alone.
Admittedly, too, it is difficult to give up stuff. If you have acquired a good supply of tools, gear, and equipment, it may be hard to share. These are decisions you will have to consider and make carefully. Maybe in a neighborhood Colonia, brief sharing can work. Consider all the factors.