CERT Prepares Participants for Diaster

Daniel Berndt
Guest Writer

Do you want to help your local community in times of disaster but don’t know where to turn? Have you thought about volunteering with the fire department or EMTs but were turned off by the idea of all that training? What about, is your favorite color green? Do you like free stuff? If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, then the Community Emergency Response Team, or CERT, is perfect for you!

Offered by the Center for Disaster Research & Education at Millersville University and affiliated with Blue Rock Emergency Management Agency, the purpose of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training program is to educate people about potential issues that may occur during a disaster. CERT’s main goal for its members is disaster preparedness. The overall CERT training totals about 24 hours and, new for this semester, is taught over three Saturday’s for eight hours each. During the training, students and community members from all backgrounds come together to learn how they can help themselves, their families, their neighbors and their community during a disaster.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Berndt. The Center for Disaster Research & Education at Millersville University is affiliated with Blue Rock Emergency Management Agency.

The goal of the Millersville CERT is to create a culture of preparedness by increasing the knowledge and skills that the citizens need to safely handle disaster and emergency situations through training and education. This CERT currently serves the University and surrounding community with recent efforts to expand to the rest of the county. As it stands, it is the sole CERT in Lancaster County. The training will cover topics such as disaster preparedness, fire suppression, light search & rescue and will conclude with a knowledge check and disaster simulation. During this unit, participants have an opportunity to ask questions about the training and to review the material. In addition, they take part in a disaster simulation where they can apply the knowledge and experience gained through the training.

The dates for CERT training are Saturday March 21, 28 and April 11 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the South Village Suites Great Room. As an orientation to the program, this semester’s information session will be held on Monday, March 16, 2015 at 7 p.m. in the Millersville University South Village Suites Great Room. The registration and liability digital form is available online at Millersville.edu/cdre/cert, where PDFs are also available for download and printing on the website. The training is absolutely free and participants will receive a backpack complete with essential emergency response gear, full training booklet, and CERT tee-shirt upon training completion.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Berndt.  CERT) training program is to educate people about potential issues that may occur during a disaster.
Photo courtesy of Daniel Berndt.
CERT) training program is to educate people about potential issues that may occur during a disaster.

To check out pictures from previous years, look over the course schedule or for more information about the Millersville CERT, head to Millersville.edu/cdre/cert or check out the Center for Disaster Research & Education’s Facebook and Google Plus pages for updates.