CERT’s Train-the-Trainer Helps Us Stay Prepared

      Ever wonder how Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) trainers learn how and what to train? On March 30, 31 and April 1 2012, the Menlo Park Fire Protection District sponsored “Train-the-Trainer” courses to answer that very question. With the specific goals of preparing instructors to deliver CERT Basic Training, understand and convey the program’s basic messages and intent, encourage students to achieve CERT objectives, and create a comfortable, well managed environment in which to accomplish it all, this course seeks to prepare participants to deliver FEMA-certified CERT Basic Training courses within their own community. Now being offered throughout California, registration requires only that one has completed the CERT Basic Training course his or herself and has a referral from a CERT sponsoring agency. In this important push to have more emergency preparedness specialists in the area, the government, California Volunteers, and California Citizen Corps, among others, are definitely shining a spotlight on safety.

      This year, Puente’s own Rita Mancera was there to take part. Taking place at the US&R Warehouse in Menlo Park, a group of around thirty participants volunteered their time to take part in what ended up being a wonderful and enlightening class. Daily activities ranged from learning how to teach putting out a fire, how to teach the Incident Command System (who does what), how to teach emergency volunteers to talk to incident victims among many other lessons. All and all, it was a valuable experience for all involved. To find out more about CERT and what you can do to be more prepared check out CERT’s various online resources (http://www.citizencorps.gov/cert/) and watch out for a class near you in the future. Material for youth like the new Teen CERT Annex are also now available online, to continue to raise awareness and emergency readiness for a safe community for everyone.

      Puente’s efforts on Emergency Preparedness are made possible with the generous support of Silicon Valley Community Foundation.


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