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Holiday movie goers may see disaster ads
State informing masses to be prepared
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After the gifts have been opened and dinner has been eaten, there’s not much to do on Christmas except go to the movies.

That’s what the Georgia Department of Human Resources is counting on.

If you attend a movie now through Jan. 3, you may see while you’re waiting for the film to start, something that could save your life.

The DHR is running ads encouraging people to buy 11 essential items for a home emergency preparedness kit.

"Some people already have some of these items at home, but we wanted them to take it a step further," said Belen Moran, state health risk coordinator for the DHR.

The items include a three-day supply of water and nonperishable food, can opener, cash (since electronic forms of payment may not be accessible), clothing, flashlight, radio, batteries, first-aid kit and medications, hygiene items and important documents.

This all-purpose list should help families endure any type of disaster. Those supplies may come in especially handy if the Southeast receives any wintry weather like the ice storms that struck the Midwest last week.

The DHR ad is part of a slide show that appears on screen between movie showings. Using a $15,000 grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the DHR contracted with National CineMedia to produce and distribute the ad.

"We wanted to find the company that has the most theaters around the state," Moran said.

Local theaters that are showing the ad include Hollywood Stadium Cinemas in Gainesville, Dawson 400 Stadium Cinemas in Dawsonville and the Mall of Georgia 20 in Buford.

Moran said the state agency chose to advertise in movie theaters to take advantage of the captive audience.

"At home, people can avoid commercials by clicking on the remote," she said. "But in movie theaters, they tend to look at the ads."

Moran admits that by using theaters as an advertising venue, the message will not reach certain populations, such as the poor or elderly, who seldom go to the movies.

"But we have done radio and TV ads in the past," she said. "We’re using any way we can to get the word out."

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