The Trinidad and Tobago Red Cross Society in collaboration with the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government will hold a series of Virtual Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Training sessions from Saturday 17th October to Saturday 25th October 2020 via ZOOM.
This follows up a series of workshops that residents of Lopinot and several other communities around Trinidad and Tobago participated in earlier this year.
On June 9th and 10th 2020 the Disaster Management Unit at the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government conducted two days of shelter management workshops via ZOOM and held a recruitment drive for shelter management volunteers.
Trainees from throughout Trinidad and Tobago took part in this disaster preparedness training and learnt how to support the key State agencies involved in disaster management that include Municipal Corporations, Radio Emergency Associated Communications Teams (REACT) and Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT). These training sessions also paid particular attention to ensuring that all members of a community who are the most vulnerable, like senior citizens, women and children, would be attended to as quickly as possible in the event of an emergency.
Mr. Jerry David, the Senior Disaster Management Coordinator at the Ministry noted that “our aim is to mainstream disaster risk reduction.” He also stated that the workshops’ main aim was to ensure that enough trained people are available to act on the ground if a disaster were to strike. The Disaster Management Unit at the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government was established in 2008 to facilitate and maintain robust disaster risk reduction capabilities at the local government level.
The Lopinot Tourism Association was contacted by Mr. Larry Joefield, from the Surrey Village Council and an active member of CERT, to be part of this groundbreaking digital training session. Among the important lessons learnt in these trainings was the new issue of COVID-19 and the importance of the new protocols of social distancing and hygiene when preparing and managing shelters. Members of the Lopinot community that took part in the training felt empowered to take action if such events were to happen in their community and also took the opportunity to make new connections with other communities around the country.
The upcoming training will be delivered in eight (8), 3-hour virtual sessions from Saturday 17th October to Saturday 25th October 2020. The deadline for submission of pre-registration forms is Monday 12th October 2020 at 4:00pm. For more information on upcoming CERT training, visit the Ministry of Community and Rural Development’s website at https://rdlg.gov.tt/community-emergency-response-team-cert/.