Most preppers tend to go it alone, gathering everything they need to survive and thrive by themselves or with their immediate family. When disaster does strike, working solo over a long period of time is not going to result in building things back to what they used to be. When SHTF your best bet in surviving long term is banding together.
In a post apocalyptic world where laws and order no longer exist, even the best solo prepper will have a hard time protecting their homestead alone. Imagine in the wake of chaos and destruction you make the permanent move to your Bug out location, you’ve got a small comfortable cabin on the outskirts of the forest complete with solar power, a well producing garden and a freshwater creek nearby. Anyone who comes across your little patch of preppers paradise is going instantly recognize the value of such a location, and unfortunately for you, even if you’re armed to the teeth you still need to sleep, and a couple of determined bandits can wait for the right time and ambush you..
Humans are social creatures and from the earliest days we have been working together as small tribes. Humans changed from nomadic hunters to settlers because of teamwork, and thus society was allowed to develop and advance to this point by distributing roles and responsibilities.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs can be used as guide material in building ourselves and society. Our physiological needs such as food, water, shelter and clothing must first be met in order to survive. Much beyond the basic elements of survival is hard to gain working alone, thus we are only enabled to grow with the help of others. The first human settlements depended on agricultural and animal farming for sustenance, once those jobs were established it gave other settlers a chance to develop skills such as cooking, masonry, trading etc. Fast forward thousand of years and you reach modern day and there are thousands of specialized skills and trades that people can pursue.
In a disaster scenario survivalist groups will naturally form, however you can be one step ahead by creating your own survivalist network and making disaster plans. When chaos hits all you have to do is communicate and regroup with your survivalist group and go from there. More than likely a base of operations will have been made, where all the members can migrate to in the wake of trouble. Within a good survivalist group there is going to be security personnel in charge of defending the base and acquisitions, in addition to farmers, hunters, mechanics, repairmen, scavengers, the list can go on and on.
Survival groups can get a lot more done than solo preppers, and the financial cost to each member can be greatly reduced due to bulk purchases and discounts. So much more can be accomplished and safety is indeed in numbers. Like minded people fit best together and getting to know them through survival games and simulated situations can help develop team strategy and harden their bonds.
Existing command structures within the military and other organizations including churches, hospitals and businesses are sure to carry through into times of trouble, however by joining forces with other individuals you can be part of an organization from the beginning that can later be dissolved and incorporated into a larger community later on.
It’s easy to start, begin with emergency preparedness between family and friends. It can take a certain level of social skill and interaction to grow larger than a small sect, but by utilizing various blogs and websites, reaching out to those like minded people in your area it can develop into a substantial network. Even if you are only basically acquainted with some people, knowing them and having a friendly relationship can be very beneficial when the time comes that someone needs helps.