By Amy Gard | Team Leader Concordia/Vernon/Woodlawn NET
The Portland Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) program, like other community emergency response team (CERT) programs around the country, was created from the observation – when major disaster strikes and people need help – they are most likely to receive that help, not from trained first responders, but from their neighbors.
Time and again, everyday people jump into action when facing the aftermath of destruction and come to the rescue of others who are injured or trapped.
It was these observations that started the idea behind the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s CERT program – to provide training and structure to civilian community members before disaster strikes Then recovery can be accelerated and volunteers can help others more safely and effectively.
Not everyone can set aside time to take the 30-hour NET training. So our volunteers try to magnify their impact by sharing their knowledge and training with the larger community in a variety of ways.
One way is by helping individual neighborhood blocks prepare together.
If you have a group of at least 10 households on your block whose residents can commit to attending, we can provide presentations to your group on the what, why and how of preparedness.
Typically, we help you host an event at a home on your street or at a public venue. We provide an abridged version of Mercy Corps’ Cascadia earthquake discussion, which highlights the science behind the risks we face here in the Pacific Northwest and the likely ramifications of a major regional disaster.
Once we cover the what and the why, we can help your group prepare individually and as a block to build the resiliency of your street. It’s like a private training for you and all your most likely rescuers!
Contact us at ConcordiaNETs@gmail.com if you have a group that would like to take advantage of this free service.
Amy Gard i s a mother, retired teacher/administrator, former Concordia business owner, saxophone player and active volunteer for the NET and Oregon Food Bank.