CERT Training

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and trains them  in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking an active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.

The CERT course is delivered in the community by a team of first responders who have the requisite knowledge and skills to instruct the sessions. It is suggested that the instructors complete a CERT Train-the-Trainer (TTT) conducted by their State Training Office for Emergency Management or the Emergency Management Institute in order to learn the training techniques that are used successfully by the LAFD.

During each session participants are required to bring safety equipment (gloves, goggles, mask) and disaster supplies (bandages, flashlight, dressings), which will be used during the session. By doing this for each session, participants are building a disaster response kit of items that they will need during a disaster.

Map Your Neighborhood (MYN)

Map Your Neighborhood” is designed to help neighborhoods prepare for disasters and is offered through many local emergency management offices. During the program, participants learn the “9 Steps to Take Immediately Following a Disaster” to secure your home and to protect your neighborhood; identify the Skills and Equipment each neighbor has that would be useful in an effective disaster response; create a Neighborhood Map identifying the locations of natural gas and propane tanks for quick response if needed; create a Contact List that helps identify those with specific needs such as elderly, disabled, or children who may be home alone during certain hours of the day; and work together as a team to evaluate your neighborhood after a disaster and take action.

Ready America

Through its Ready Campaign, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security educates and empowers Americans to take some simple steps to prepare for and respond to potential  emergencies, including natural disasters and terrorist attacks. Ready asks individuals to do three key things: get an emergency supply kit, make a family emergency plan, and be informed about the different types of emergencies that could occur and their appropriate responses.

Niagara County

For information on available opportunities for training in Niagara County, please contact Valerie Haseley at 716.205.0076 or

City of Buffalo

For information on available opportunities for training in Buffalo, please contact Dana Estrada at 716.851.4299 or

Original Certification & Training Classes

Preregistration is required. For insurance purposes, all participants in this FREE training must enroll as Border Community SERVICE volunteers.  Class size is limited. CERT course participants must plan to attend all classes.

Online Skills Enhancement Training

IS-100.a Introduction to the Incident Command System (ICS)

This course provides the foundation for higher level ICS training. It describes the history, features and principles, and organizational structure of the Incident Command System and explains the relationship between ICS and the National Incident Management System.

IS-700.a Introduction to National Incident Management System (NIMS)

This course gives an overview of the National Incident Management System. NIMS provides a consistent nationwide template to enable all government, private-sector, and nongovernmental organizations to work together during domestic incidents.

CERT Search & Rescue Tutorial

This tutorial allows CERT-trained individuals to review and refresh their skills in size-up and search and rescue techniques. Teams can use the tutorial as a group refresher activity. Those who are not yet CERT members can also use the tutorial for background on the CERT basic training.

Point of Dispensing (POD)

There are a number of situations where local public health departments might need to mobilize a point of distribution to dispense medication or vaccinate a large group of people. "Working in a POD" provides you with an understanding of what a POD is, how it operates, and what functional roles you may be assigned as a volunteer serving in a POD.

This course is intended for anyone who might be asked to work in a public health POD, including public health staff members. This might also include members of the Medical Reserve Corps, Community Emergency Response Teams, or other volunteers.