Preparing Your Community
Neighborhood Response Groups
Building connections with our neighbors is a crucial step in preparedness, enabling us to identify who may need assistance and who can provide support during a major disaster. Neighborhood Response Groups (NRGs) are community-led initiatives that foster collective readiness for emergencies like wildfires, earthquakes, and floods.
NRG members take charge of their own preparedness while offering aid and support to fellow neighbors. The program's strength lies in the social cohesion it builds among neighbors, motivating them to connect and support each other despite busy lives, with the shared goal of safeguarding everyone's well-being in times of crisis.
In an NRG structure, teams of neighbors, led by local CERT members and Block Captains, can help with the following:
- Administer basic first aid if someone is injured or turn off utilities if there is a gas leak
- Assist neighbors with special needs (Access & Functional Needs –AFN)
- Be sure that all neighbors are aware of important messaging from first responders and other local officials
- Check to make sure no neighbor is overlooked or left behind during an evacuation situation.
Each group of 15-20 homes has a team of Block Captains to look after the residents within their block.
Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates volunteers about disaster preparedness for the hazards that may impact their neighborhood and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and emergency medical operations. CERTs also have opportunities to volunteer and assist in local community events.
The CERT program offers a consistent, nationwide approach to volunteer training and organization that professional responders can rely on during disaster situations, allowing them to focus on more complex tasks. Mill Valley residents and those in surrounding Southern Marin communities may seek to join the local Southern Marin CERT team.
The 20 hour training is available from age 16 and up and is currently available in both a hybrid and in-person format. To register for a class please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit Ready Marin CERT.