Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

About CERT

CERT was developed by the City of Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) in 1985. They realized that the impact of disasters could be lessened if citizens were more prepared through disaster survival training. The training they created was adopted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in 1994 and expanded into a nationwide program under Citizen Corps. There are now thousands of CERTs in communities across the country.

Program Overview

The Boone County CERT is a volunteer program which educates citizens about disaster preparedness and basic response skills such as:

  • Individual and Family Preparedness
  • Basic Fire Safety
  • Search and Rescue
  • Incident Management
  • Disaster Medical Operations

In the event of a major emergency or disaster within the County, the reality may be that public safety resources will be overwhelmed. CERT education is intended to lessen the impact of disaster on participating individuals, and enable them to aid family members, neighbors or coworkers immediately following an emergency until responders arrive.

Volunteers can receive additional training enabling them to act as a force multiplier to supplement response or incident management operations at the direction of the Boone County Office of Emergency Management.

Volunteers are classified into six levels based on the training they have received. Below are the level classifications:

  • Awareness Level
    This level is for individuals interested in taking the CERT Basic Training course to learn more about disaster preparedness and gain skills to care for themselves, their families, neighbors, and/or coworkers during an emergency. Awareness Level volunteers have no annual participation requirements, nor do they receive issued equipment.
  • Level I – V
    CERT volunteers who are interested in actively participating in the CERT Program by attending monthly training, outreach events, volunteering, assisting during disasters, and working to increase their training level are referred to as “Team Members. Each team member is issued a membership level based on the training they have received through the program.
Full 2023 CERT Training Schedule

Eligibility Requirements

To take the CERT Basic Training course, participants must:

  • Be a resident or employed in Boone County. Non-county residents wishing to participate will be admitted on a case by case basis.
  • Be at least 18 years old.

To be considered for membership at a Level I or higher, participants must meet the additional requirements below:

  • Complete the CERT Basic Training course.
  • Not be a convicted felon or currently under felony charges. Have no criminal convictions within the last two years (excluding traffic violations); have no marijuana use or possession charges in the past two years and no other drug use or possession charges in the past five years.
  • Complete and submit a background check through the Family Care Safety Registry
  • Complete the CERT Program Application
  • Complete the Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liability Agreement.
  • Complete the CERT Volunteer Agreement and Code of Conduct.

2022 CERT Basic Training

The CERT Basic Training provides individuals who complete this course with the basic skills required to respond to their community’s immediate needs in the aftermath of a disaster, when emergency services are not immediately available. By working together, CERT volunteers can help save lives and protect property using the basic techniques in this course. The target audience for this course is individuals who desire the skills and knowledge required to prepared for an respond to a disaster.

This course is delivered over four weekly sessions and one all day session. During the training, participants will receive a combination of lecture and hands-on skills training. Participants will take a written exam and receive a certificate indicating successful completion of the course.

Participants cannot miss more than 10% of the total course to be eligible for completion. This course has a 20 participant maximum and a 10 participant minimum. Should the course be cancelled due to low participation, you will be contacted by the Boone County CERT Program Manager no less than 24 hours prior to the beginning of the course.

                    march 8th, 6PM to 9PM. Unit 1: Disaster Preparedness. Unit 2: Cert Organization.
                    march 15th 6PM to 9PM. Unit 3: Disaster Medical Operations Part 1. Unit 4: Disaster Medical Operations Part 2.
                    march 22nd 6PM to 9PM. Unit 5: Disaster Phsycology. Unit 8: Cert & terrorism.
                    march 29th 6PM to 9PM. Unit 6: Fire safety & utility controls.
                    April 1st 8AM to 5PM. Unit 7: Light search & rescue. Unit 8: Course review and final exam. Disaster simulation
CERT Basic Training Schedule

Hybrid CERT Basic Training

Not ready to return to in-seat training, or prefer a virtual learning? Boone County Office of Emergency Management has proudly adopted the Online CERT hybrid learning model developed by the University of Utah School of Medicine. Online CERT is self-paced, and progress can be saved any time and resumed later. The course covers the standardized 2019 FEMA curriculum and is available in multiple languages.

The course is presented through a multimedia learning experience including videos, virtual reality simulations, interactive knowledge checks and more with live IT support. Online CERT combines 12 hours of online lecture, accessible via mobile device or desktop, and 16 hours of hands-on practical training administered by our office. At the completion of the online course, participants are issued a certificate, and become eligible to register for the proctored practical skills training.

To register for the upcoming in-seat CERT Basic Training or Hybrid CERT Basic Training, complete the registration form at the link below. Be sure to indicate your preferred delivery method.

Register for CERT Training