Participant describes CERT training as informative and educational

Carbon (r) being presented with his award by Donaldson Frederick

Participant of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training, Jonathan Carbon, said the week-long training received from the Office of Disaster Management (ODM) was very informative and educational.

The training was organized by the ODM with support from the Rotary Club of Dominica, US Agency for International Development (USAID), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Ministry of Environment, Climate Resilience, Disaster Management and Urban Renewal.

This is the 13th CERT Training which has been successfully completed.  

Carbon was speaking at the closing ceremony of the CERT training at the ODM in Jimmit on May 31st, 2019. He said  he did not know what to expect when he first started the training.

“Initially I did not know what to expect in terms of training to be part of CERT but it proved to be a very informative and educational course. We were trained by a well-rounded team of instructors which of whom I believed delivered information properly and adequately so that we could actually understand and get a firm grasp of what was expected of us by CERT members”, he said.

He added that the participants were trained in different areas including radio communications as well as map reading, life search and rescue, among other areas.

“We also had field activities which were somewhat challenging physically, but that is expected, given the nature training and the tasks which were expected and required to complete. We all applied ourselves and performed to the best of our abilities and enjoyed this course”, Carbon stated.

Carbon was awarded as most outstanding student of the course.

Donaldson Frederick

Meantime, Acting Program Officer at the Office of Disaster Management (ODM), Donaldson Frederick said thirty- four volunteers successfully completed the training.

“Thirty-four volunteers from the Kalinago communities were directly impacted from this training. The community emergency response training is an all risk all hazard training designed to help individuals protect themselves, family, work, colleges, neighbors and neighborhoods in emergency situations. The training provides an opportunity for community members to be more self-resilient when and if disasters affect them and their community,” Frederick said.

He said the C.E.R.T program enables the development of multi-functional response teams whose members can give critical support to professional first responders and provide immediate assistance to victims.

“The training was conducted by a solid team of local instructors as well as supervisors. The team displayed commitment to ensure that the cert training was a success,” Frederick stated.

He added, “The Kalinago people; the indigenous people of this island are special. You were targeted mainly because we notice that the distance of the community from the city, [would make it] very difficult for first responders to reach you within 24 hours after the impact of a hazard.”

Frederick contended that having properly trained community first responders, communities and individuals will create the foundation needed to handle everyday accidents and medical emergencies.

Some of the other activities that the students where involved in during the training include Disaster Psychology, Initial Damage Assessment, Basic Firefighting Suppression and Light Search and Rescue Operations.

The CERT training ran from the 27th to the 31st of May, 2019.

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