Community Response Teams to be trained

BASSETERRE, 12TH August, 2013 – (NEMA) – Enhancing community resilience to disasters continues to be a priority for the Ministry of Homeland Security and the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), according to Districts Coordinator, Mrs. Telca Wallace. Consequently, members from select districts in St. Kitts, are to participate in a one week Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training organised by the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency, in conjunction with NEMA. The training will be held at the Sandy Point Community Centre from Monday, August 19th to Friday, August 23rd, beginning at 8am each morning.

Mrs. Wallace says that although participants of this exercise were chosen from Districts 3 through six and the St. Peter’s subdivision of District 8. Interested persons will have another opportunity to get involved, as the training will be repeated in October of this year. The CERT training is supported by the Italian International Centre on Environmental Monitoring (CIMA) Research Foundation through the Enhancing Resilience to Reduce Vulnerability in the Caribbean Region (ERC) Project and CIDA, UK Aid, and AUS AID through the CDM-HIP Programme being implemented by CDEMA. The training led by the recently established CDEMA technical roving team which is a multi disciplined operation made available to provide capacity building and other critical emergency support to the eighteen Participating States of the organisation.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program provides an opportunity for communities to become more self-reliant during disasters that may affect them. Thirty participants and at least twelve facilitators and supervisors from around the island will take part in this training which seeks to educate community members about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their areas. Persons who have participated in previous CERT trainings conducted by CDEMA will be among the supervisors. Partners such as Police and Fire Services have committed to supporting the training by facilitating specific areas throughout the week.

The CERT programme trains individuals in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organisation, and disaster medical operations. CERT participants for this course will be required to participate in a number of physical outdoor activities and work as team members and leaders.

The training will conclude on Friday, August 23rd 2013, with a brief closing ceremony. Members of the media are invited to access participants and trainers at that time.

For more information or to register for the CERT training slated for October, 2013, please contact the Districts Coordinator, Mrs. Telca Wallace at 466-5100 or by visiting the NEMA office at Lime Kiln, Basseterre.

CDEMA Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency. Resilience Way, Lower Estate, St. Michael Tel: (246) 434-4880, Fax: (246) 271-3660
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