Dallas volunteers prepare for emergencies


There is an old adage that states a team must prepare for the worst, but hope for the best outcome.

One group of City volunteers has taken this advice to heart and has committed their free time to training for the moments when the City and its people most need their help.

The City of Dallas Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is committed to creating opportunities for people to volunteer and help the community prepare for and respond to emergencies. The goal is to have all residents participate in making neighborhoods safer by providing the tools and training needed for preventing and handling threats of terrorism, crime and disasters of all kinds.

“The CERT program provides an excellent opportunity for the citizens of Dallas to play an important role in helping to safeguard, prepare for and respond to major emergencies in our community,” said Cassandra Wallace, Dallas CERT Program Manager.

Since its establishment in 2007, CERT has trained some 1,600 people. After completing an extensive eight-week course taught by first-responders, CERT members become proficient in emergency preparedness basics that can be used in their homes, workplaces and communities.

“Following a major disaster, our first responders who provide fire and medical services might not be able to meet the demand for these services,” said Wallace. ”People may have to rely on each other for help in order to meet their immediate life saving and life sustaining needs.”

Dallas CERT volunteers are essential partners in emergency preparedness and recovery and have proven to be an active and vital part of their communities.

“During a disaster, CERT members also become extra personnel and provide extra resources to existing city operations,” said Wallace. “They can assist in non-emergency roles, such as clerical, documentation, traffic direction, damage assessment, light search and rescue, and other roles to augment city personnel.”

To learn more about the CERT program, visit www.dallascert.com and www.fema.gov/community-emergency-response-teams.

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