The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program is administered by FEMA's Community Preparedness Division. CERT is a training program that prepares people to help themselves, their families and their neighbors in the event of a disaster in their community. Through CERT, citizens can learn about disaster preparedness and receive training in basic disaster response skills such as fire suppression, light search and rescue, and disaster medical operations. With this training, volunteers can provide critical support by giving immediate assistance to victims before emergency first responders arrive on scene. CERT volunteers also support the community year-round by participating in community preparedness outreach activities and distributing materials on disaster preparedness and education.
To find or register a CERT program in your area, visit: https://www.fema.gov/community-emergency-response-teams
Fire Corps is one of five partner programs under Citizen Corps, the Federal Emergency Management Agency's grassroots strategy to bring together government and community leaders to involve citizens in all-hazards emergency preparedness and resilience. Citizen Corps partner programs share the common goal of helping communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies of all kinds.
Launched in 2004, Fire Corps is managed by the National Volunteer Fire Council and works with various organizations that make up the Fire Corps National Advisory Committee (NAC). Members of the Fire Corps NAC represent every major fire service organization in the nation. They provide valuable input, critical feedback, and supplementary ideas as to the direction of the program. Fire Corps is also supported by the United States Fire Administration.
Together these organizations work to create valuable resources and foster programs that will bring community members into local fire and emergency service departments to assist them with non-emergency tasks.
Fire Corps seeks to:
- learn about promising practices being used in existing non-operational volunteer programs;
- share this information with departments that want to expand or improve their programs;
- increase the use of non-emergency volunteers in existing programs;
- help citizens learn about and get involved in Fire Corps programs in their communities;
- help agencies without a program to get one started.
To find or register a Fire Corps program in your area, visit: http://www.firecorps.org/
The Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is a national network of volunteers, organized locally to improve the health and safety of their communities. The MRC network comprises 989 community-based units and almost 200,000 volunteers located throughout the United States and its territories.
MRC volunteers include medical and public health professionals, as well as other community members without healthcare backgrounds. MRC units engage these volunteers to strengthen public health, improve emergency response capabilities and build community resiliency. They prepare for and respond to natural disasters, such as wildfires, hurricanes, tornados, blizzards, and floods, as well as other emergencies affecting public health, such as disease outbreaks. They frequently contribute to community health activities that promote healthy habits.
To find or register a MRC program in your area, visit: https://mrc.hhs.gov/HomePage
Our nation is built on the strength of our citizens. Every day, we encounter situations calling upon us to be the eyes and ears of law enforcement. Not only does neighborhood watch allow citizens to help in the fight against crime, it is also an opportunity for communities to bond through service. The Neighborhood Watch Program draws upon the compassion of average citizens, asking them to lend their neighbors a hand. The National Neighborhood Watch Program (formerly USAonWatch) is the portal for training to assist law enforcement agencies and their communities, technical assistance, resource documents, watch stories, networking, and assistance to the field.
Since 1972, the USAonWatch-Neighborhood Watch Program (housed within the National Sheriffs’ Association) has worked to unite law enforcement agencies, private organizations, and individual citizens in a nation-wide effort to reduce crime and improve local communities. The success of the program has established Neighborhood Watch as the nation’s premier crime prevention and community mobilization program. Visible signs of the program are seen throughout America on street signs, window decals, community block parties and service projects.
The National Neighborhood Watch program empowers citizens to become active in community efforts through participation in Neighborhood Watch groups.
To find or register Neighborhood Watch programs in your area, visit: http://www.nnw.org/usaonwatch
The Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) Program serves as a gateway to information for law enforcement agencies and citizens interested in law enforcement volunteer programs. The program's ultimate goal is to enhance the capacity of state and local law enforcement agencies by incorporating the time and skills that volunteers can contribute to a community law enforcement agency.
To find or register Volunteers in Police Service programs in your area, visit: http://www.policevolunteers.org/programs/