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Author: David Myers
Throughout this week, we have been honoring the service and commitment of our nation’s volunteers. As President Obama said earlier this week: "America's story has been marked by the service of volunteers. Generations of selfless individuals from all walks of life have served each other and our Nation, each person dedicated to making tomorrow better than today…Volunteers are the lifeblood of our schools and shelters, hospitals and hotlines, and faith-based and community groups. From mentoring at-risk youth and caring for older Americans to supporting our veterans and military families and...
Posted On: April 14, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
 Wadena, MN, June 22, 2010 -- An American Red Cross emergency vehicle provides meals and beverages to volunteers at the Wadena City Cemetery which sustained severe tree damage during the June 17, 2010 F4 tornado. Volunteer agencies play an important role during the recovery process. FEMA/Michael Mancino Wadena, MN, June 22, 2010 -- An American Red Cross emergency vehicle provides meals and beverages to volunteers at the Wadena City Cemetery which sustained severe tree damage during the June 17, 2010 F-4 tornado. Volunteer agencies play an important role during the recovery...
Posted On: April 11, 2011
Author: Nicole Lurie, M.D., MSPH,
As National Public Health Week draws to a close, as events in Japan shift toward recovery, they act as an important reminder of how closely tied disaster emergency management is to health. Indeed, medical concerns of citizens are always a preeminent focus of any disaster response.Regardless of the nature of a particular disaster, the underlying health of affected populations has a significant impact on disaster management. Populations across the U.S. struggle on a day-to-day basis against a myriad of chronic health conditions such as heart disease, asthma and other common illnesses. With good...
Posted On: April 8, 2011
Author: Tony Russell (R8)
As Administrator Fugate often stresses, the private sector plays a crucial role in the emergency preparedness team. Capitalizing on this philosophy, the Louisiana Business Emergency Operations Center (LA BEOC) in Baton Rouge, La., links businesses and volunteer organizations with the state's Emergency Operations Center.  The LA BEOC works with businesses to improve their disaster preparedness and help them return to normal operations as quickly as possible following a disaster. As we have seen time and again, helping get businesses back up and running is critical to stabilizing local...
Posted On: April 5, 2011
Author: Paulette Aniskoff
As we’ve highlighted several times on the blog, Citizen Corps Councils and Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) are a great way to get involved in preparing your community before disasters strike. If you’re involved with a local Citizen Corps Council or CERT Program please be sure to add your information to the Council Registration and CERT Program Registration pages today.Registering will help individuals interested in Citizen Corps and CERT from your area get in touch with you. In addition, being listed in the national registry will allow you to share relevant information with other...
Posted On: March 29, 2011
Author: Public Affairs
As many of you know, last week Tim Manning, our Deputy Administrator for Protection and National Preparedness, traveled to Hawaii and American Samoa, as part of a previously scheduled trip to meet with our state, territory and local partners and to get an update on how the recovery efforts are going in American Samoa, 18 months after the island was struck by an earthquake and resulting tsunami.Tim covered a lot of ground during his time there and got to meet with many members of the emergency management team, from the governor, to the territory's emergency medical services team, to village...
Posted On: March 25, 2011
Author: Richard Hildreth
Editor’s Note: Mr. Hildreth is the Mayor of Pacific, Wash., a town in Western Washington between Seattle and Tacoma. Mayor Richard Hildreth of Pacific, Wash., prepares for emergency responder training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness. I recently completed the Hazard Assessment and Response Management (HARM) course, at FEMA’s Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), in Anniston, Alabama, which trains students to conduct a multi-disciplined response to a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, or Explosive  incident. As a mayor charged with making key decisions that impact my...
Posted On: March 24, 2011
Author: David Kaufman
Over the past year the agency has undertaken efforts to consider its foundations and to think strategically about the outcomes it will achieve over the next few years. This self-examination has resulted in the creation of two guiding documents: FEMA Publication 1 (Pub 1) and the 2011 – 2014 Strategic Plan.  Pub 1 outlines the agency’s principles and culture while describing its history, mission, purpose, and philosophy. Pub 1 also serves as the operational link to, and provides the context for, the implementation of the new strategic plan for the agency.  The strategic plan will...
Posted On: March 23, 2011
Author: Rachel Jacky
If you are thinking about getting trained in basic disaster response skills and becoming part of your local Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), or if you are already a CERT member or trainer, I encourage you to check out our updated CERT Basic Training course materials.For those that don’t know, CERTs are a committed group of local volunteers who have received training in emergency response and preparedness who can play a vital role in assisting the community after a disaster. The updated CERT course materials cover topics ranging from first aid to search and rescue. We made some...
Posted On: March 23, 2011
Author: Tim Manning
Tuesday was my first full day here in Pago Pago, American Samoa. I started out the morning meeting with the many members of our emergency management team here on the island, beginning with the chief of the Emergency Medical Services unit. We toured their EMS facility and I was very lucky to have a quick chance to speak to some of their EMS workers. The chief told us how critical volunteers are to their work and that they focus on supporting emergency preparedness efforts in their different villages on the island. What the chief explained – that having a strong grassroots capacity is key for...
Posted On: March 17, 2011