GIVE through
December 31

CERT Auxiliary of Santa Cruz County

Organization Mission

We build cadres of volunteers and empower them with the skills, knowledge and confidence for safely serving as immediate responders in disasters affecting their communities in Santa Cruz County.

We accomplish this by supporting the Santa Cruz Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Council and other disaster service organizations to develop and sustain the CERT program—with no paid staff and 1,150 volunteers.

The Big Idea:
Expansion of CERT Basic and Advanced Training

We aim to expand and adapt our CERT basic and advanced training to reflect the unique geographical areas in Santa Cruz County. We will develop a training branch that focuses on mountain communities’ needs and one that serves coastal communities. All basic CERT skills are taught by each training branch but each branch can tailor training needs for their area’s disaster challenges, such as wildfires and mudslides versus tsunami and flooding threats.

We are requesting support to partially cover the cost of training equipment, specifically for a full body manikin and a chin” lift, head tilt manikin for our light search and rescue, and disaster medicine training units. The two manikins cost approximately $1,500.

We also hope to conduct more Basic CERT classes concurrently. In the past year, we met our goal of adding 26 more FEMA-trained volunteer CERT instructors and are now able to offer even more Basic CERT Trainings and Advanced Trainings which require the manikins, and backpacks containing $60 of safety gear such as: hard hat, safety vest, eye protection goggles, N95 dust masks, gas turn-off tool, flashlight, duct tape, leather gloves, whistle, first aid supplies, etc. Backpacks are given at no cost to each CERT trained volunteer for personal protection.

 

CERT training has helped me take personal responsibility to be more prepared for a disaster. I’ve learned how to properly store emergency food and water. I have much better first aid kits in better places, along with fire extinguishers that I now know how to use. I have a tool for shutting off gas and know where my shutoff valves are for all utilities. My family members, including our pets, have a “go bag” ready if we have to take shelter elsewhere. We have a family disaster plan and I hope to create a neighborhood CERT team so we have a plan to stay safe while helping each other in the event of a disaster.

Diana G. Soquel, CA