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Goleta’s Community Emergency Response Team Graduates Ready to Help

32 local residents participated in eight weeks of training

The City of Goleta will recognize its first class of Community Emergency Response Team members on Saturday, Aug. 28 at the Goleta Valley Community Center.

CERT members are trained to provide critical support to first responders, offer immediate assistance to victims and organize spontaneous volunteers at a disaster site. CERT members can also help with nonemergency projects that help improve the safety of the community.

“I want to thank all the participants for investing the time into this emergency training,” Goleta Mayor Eric Onnen said. “Their efforts will benefit our community for years to come. Being prepared is our best defense against disaster.”

The final class will include a simulation and evaluation exercise from 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Goleta Valley Community Center, 5679 Hollister Ave. The graduation ceremony will be in the main auditorium, and a barbecue will immediately follow. Attendees are encouraged to park behind the community center as the west entrance to the driveway will be blocked off for the simulation.

Thirty-two local residents participated in eight weeks of training that included segments on disaster preparedness, team organization and disaster psychology, medical operations, damage assessment, disaster simulation, fire suppression, and light search and rescue.

CERT participants include Linda Battala, Steve Beal, David Briggs, Jim Caesar, Lee Coulter, Kirsten Deshler, Ed Easton, Marv Gustafson, Lala Hannah, Yukimi Lemont, George Levinthol, Adam Lewis, Maureen Lewis, Maria Lopez, Amy Mallet, Todd Matson, David McClure, Michael Mills, Richard Nordsieck, Gilbert Perleberg, Barbara Pies, Jesus Rios, Mark Rousseau, Brian Salisbury, Tari Schnepf, Chris Sprenger, Rubayi Srivastava, Jill Switzer, Dorothy Turner, Mike Wapner and Linda Williams.

Additional CERT courses will be offered through the City of Goleta in early 2011. For more information or to register, click here or call 805.961.7500. The CERT program is part of Goleta Prepare Now! / ¡Goleta Prepárese Hoy!, a program to educate and prepare the community for disaster.

— Valerie Kushnerov is a public information officer for the City of Goleta.

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