“The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is a group of trained, certified volunteers who help their community in a time of disaster or crisis.”
A News Release from Niagara’s Regional Government in Niagara, Ontario
Posted March 13th, 2023 on Niagara At Large
Niagara Region is searching for volunteers from across Niagara to join its Community Emergency Response Team.
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is a group of trained, certified volunteers who help their community in a time of disaster or crisis. Having an emergency response team in place helps increase Niagara’s safety and resiliency, and is a critical part of emergency response employed by communities throughout North America.
The team is trained to provide a personnel surge in the aftermath of a variety of disasters. Common ways members can provide support during or after an emergency include:
- Immediate first aid and rescue around their homes post-disaster
- Helping with disaster relief efforts
- Distribution of emergency supplies
- Assisting with annual emergency exercises
After successfully recruiting 50 qualified candidates in its first year in 2022, The CERT team had their first operational deployment during the blizzard in December. The team helped staff at three different warming centres from Dec. 25 to Dec. 27, providing more than 120 hours of coverage.
Now in its second year, the CERT plans to recruit 100 new volunteers. Recruitment will be completed in two groups of 50 people. Applicants can indicate whether they are interested in applying for the spring or fall cohort.
Information about eligibility and training dates is available online.
If you join the team, you will receive free, mandatory training to prepare you for your role. Applications are now open until Mar. 24.
All volunteers must complete an on-boarding and orientation training program, in addition to two training sessions each year to review and practice their skills as well as introduce new topics. Members will also be invited to participate in various emergency exercises and events throughout the year.
Niagara Region gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Niagara Community Foundation. The Foundation builds permanently endowed charitable funds and provides grants to eligible charitable organization in culture, health, education, environment, recreation and social service sectors.
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