Community Emergency Response Team
Cal OES Inside Look
The CERT program was featured on a Cal OES Inside Look video. Check out more Cal OES Inside Look Videos at: https://www.youtube.com/user/CalEMATV
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates volunteers about disaster preparedness for the hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. CERT offers a consistent, nationwide approach to volunteer training and organization that professional responders can rely on during disaster situations, allowing them to focus on more complex tasks.
California CERT Program
There are over 450 CERT programs in California. The State CERT Administrator provides technical support and CERT updates to programs in California. Currently, the State CERT Administrator in California is Suu-Va Tai. You can reach Suu-Va at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FEMA CERT Information
The CERT program is administered and supported nationally by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Click here to visit the FEMA CERT website: Ready.gov/Cert.
Visit the FEMA CERT website to:
- Find a CERT programs near you based on zip code or city name
- Register your CERT program and complete an annual certification survey
- Download CERT Basic training materials in multiple languages
The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services has released five Request for Proposals for the Listos California Grant Program. The grant application deadline is Monday, March 4, 2024.
Listos California’s mission is to ensure every Californian, regardless of age, ability, income or language, deserves culturally competent education to prepare for earthquakes, floods, and the immediate threat of wildfires. Listos California has reached millions of Californians with low incomes, disabilities and language barriers, older adults, and other highly vulnerable Californians since its inception in 2019.
The five grant types available are:
Statewide Grants ($8 million)
Eligible applicants include nonprofit organizations with a 501c(3) status. Applicants must subaward funds (via Second-Tier Subawards) to a variety of local CBO partners to provide disaster training and resources to diverse populations disproportionately impacted by emergencies.
Target Grants ($6 million)
Eligible applicants include nonprofit organizations with a 501c(3). Applicants can work independently or subgrant with local CBOs to provide disaster training and resources to diverse populations disproportionately impacted by emergencies
Tribal Government Grants ($1 million)
Eligible applicants must be a federally recognized Tribal Government with administrative offices in California with a goal to increase their communities’ disaster preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation capabilities.
Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) Grants ($500,000)
Eligible applicants include CERT programs registered through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), new CERT Programs approved by the California State CERT Administrator, CERT Program Sponsoring Agencies or a fiscal agent representing the CERT Program to support projects that help prepare vulnerable and underserved populations.
Youth Developmental Grant (LY) Program ($1 million)
Eligible applicants include nonprofit organizations with a 501c(3) or CERT programs registered through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), new CERT Programs approved by the California State CERT Administrator, CERT Program Sponsoring Agencies or a fiscal agent representing the CERT Program to support projects that help prepare vulnerable and underserved populations.
Cal OES will be hosting a Request for Proposal and Grant Subaward Application Training on January 24, 2024. The training will provide a general overview of the Listos Grants Program and instruction on how to complete application forms. Any organization interested in attending the training should contact ListosGrants@caloes.ca.gov.
CERT Program Manager Course
Here is the schedule of virtual CERT Program Manager Course deliveries being offered by FEMA:
• November 14 through November 17, 2023
• January 9 through January 12, 2024
• March 26 through March 29, 2024
• April 9 through April 12, 2024
• May 21 through May 24, 2024
• August 13 through August 16, 2024
You can register to take this course at https://training.fema.gov/emicourses. The course code for the CERT Program Manager training is 0427.
CERT Train-the-Trainer Course
Here is the schedule of virtual CERT Train-the-Trainer Course deliveries being offered by FEMA:• December 5 through 14, 2023
• February 6 through 15, 2024
• March 12 through 21, 2024
• April 16 through 25, 2024
• July 16 through 25, 2024
• September 9 through 19, 2024
You can register to take this course at https://training.fema.gov/emicourses. The course code for the CERT Program Manager training is 0428.
Previous CERT related Webinars
Cal OES has partnered with FEMA Region 2 and the National CERT Association to host CERT related training webinars. You can sign up to receive emails about upcoming webinars here: https://forms.gle/7Li3qUJp4xJKPaV87
- Part 1 of 5: Developing and Organizing your CERT Team to the Max (8/23/21) – Presented by Lisa Rubey (New Braunfels CERT). This session will discuss how to bring your CERT Team to the next level and maximize your CERT strengths.
- Part 2 of 5: Spontaneous Volunteers Lessons Learned in Argentina and Chile (9/8/21) – Professor Duncan Shaw (Manchester University, UK) and Dr. Jenny Moreno (University of Concepcion, Chile). This talk will present the concepts of spontaneous volunteering, the process of planning for spontaneous volunteers as outlined in ISO22319, and case studies of implementing ISO22391 with governments in Chile and Argentina to create systems for involving spontaneous volunteers.
- Part 3 of 5: Disasterville (9/21/21) – Presented by James Ray (Utah Division of Emergency Management). Disasterville is an out of the box idea that provides a fun interactive experience that CERT programs can use to strengthen community buy-in, recruit for CERT training, refresh CERT skills and build stronger relationships between the public and professional first responders.
- Part 4 of 5: Search and Rescue, Lost Person Behavior (10/12/21) – Presented by Dr. Robert Koester. Lost person behavior is the cornerstone of search and rescue efforts. Based upon a landmark study, Dr. Koester outlines a definitive guide to solving the puzzle of where a lost person might be found.
- Part 5 of 5: Maintaining and Revitalizing your CERT Program (10/26/21) – Presented by Teresa Greenhalgh from San Diego County Office of Emergency Services, California. Teresa shares ideas and best practices for maintaining and revitalizing your CERT program.
You can find more webinars from FEMA on their preparedness webinar here: https://www.fema.gov/emergency-managers/individuals-communities/preparedness-webinars.
*Please note that after you click the link, Adobe Connect will ask you to log in, you can just hit cancel and the webinar should start.
American Sign Language 101 for CERT Webinar (2/2/22) – Presented by AQI Interpreting Services, this training is going to focus on the communication needs for including Deaf and Hard of Hearing participants in your CERT program. Typically, a person with a hearing loss and uses sign language as their primary mode of communication requires accommodations to fully understand presentations spoken in English. American Sign Language (ASL) and English are not the same. ASL has it own grammar and syntax with just as much richness and nuance as any other language. The instructors will bring a perspective of being Deaf, a sign language interpreter and a person with a mild to moderate hearing loss and learning sign language. Please join us as you learn techniques to enhance your curriculum to include Deaf and Hard of Hearing community members to your class. You will also learn a few survival signs used for Emergency management situations such as hurt, pain, where, water, name, and many more!
FEMA Resource Typing for CERT Overview and Q&A (10/7/21) – FEMA has released National Qualification System (NQS) Job Titles/Position Qualifications and Position Task Books (PTBs) for three CERT positions:
- CERT Team Leader– a volunteer part of a CERT who directs team activities
- CERT Chief – a volunteer who is responsible for a specific functional area within the CERT
- CERT Volunteer– a volunteer who is a part of a CERT and trains in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization and disaster medical operations
During the first part of the webinar, the FEMA CERT Office will give an overview of the Resource Typing for CERT, guidance from FEMA on implementation, and answer questions.
During the second part of the webinar, the National CERT Association will share how it will be supporting this effort by implementing credentialing lookup through the NCA Member ID card and establishing a national CERT Resource Typing workgroup.
- Click here to view part 1 of the webinar: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/pa6hlig70llb/
- Click here to view part 2 of the webinar: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/pfos4mkuayhe/
The Past Present and Future of CERT Webinar (5/14/21) – To honor the achievements of Frank Borden, FEMA Region 2 National Preparedness Division partnered with the State of California and the National CERT Association (NCA) to host a nationwide webinar on the Past, Present and Future of CERT (Community Emergency Response Team). Frank Borden led the creation of the CERT program in 1985, graduating the first class of community members in 1986. Borden is known as the “Father of CERT.” This session includes presentations from FEMA and other CERT leaders on the current and future landscape of the CERT program.
CERT Best Practices: COVID-19 Vaccine POD Support Webinar (2/19/21) – FEMA Region II’s National Preparedness Division partnered with the National CERT Association to host a COVID-19 Vaccine POD support webinar. This webinar featured county logistic leads responsible for coordinating staffing support and CERT program managers who have been activated to support Vaccine PODs. This webinar is useful for anyone who is interested in supporting Vaccine PODs, including CERT program managers, CERT volunteers and other partners.
CERT Disaster Response Best Practices Webinar (9/24/2020) – The Region II National Preparedness Division in collaboration with the National Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Association held a webinar on CERT Disaster Response Best Practices. This webinar featured speakers from CERT programs across the country who have deployed to disasters.
Upcoming CERT related Webinars
The 2024 National CERT Conference will be held at the DC Convention Center. The dates will be set soon.
Sign up for the 2024 National CERT Conference email list here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2024NationalCERTConferenceEmailList
National CERT Association
The National CERT Association (NCA) is a non-profit organization that works with FEMA to support CERT programs across the US. The NCA has a MOA agreement with FEMA and is led by CERT leaders across the US. Learn more about the National CERT Association at https://nationalcert.org.