Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Training Explained



CERT is an acronym for Community Emergency Response Teams. A Community Emergency Response Team is a group of volunteers that are trained by experts in emergency management to manage an emergency in their community until professional help can arrive on location or to work with professional responders to help them during an emergency.


Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training educates volunteers about disaster preparedness for the hazards that may impact their area. This training is for basic disaster response skills, including fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, disaster medical operations and even psychological first aid. CERT offers a consistent, nationwide approach to training and organization that professional responders can rely on during and after disasters.

By the end of CERT training each person should be able to perform the following tasks:

  • Assist emergency services personnel when requested.

  • Assume some of the same functions as emergency services personnel following a disaster

  • Prepare families and communities prior to emergencies and assist neighbors during an emergency when first responders are not immediately available

CERT training is our way of making sure that each community in The Bahamas has at least one trained group of people that are familiar with both the community and the people that live in it so they can assist in disaster preparedness and response exercises.


CERT training involves more than just sitting in class, each lesson is followed by hands-on training and ends with a drill. During the drill, participants are required to respond to a simulated disaster. The simulated disaster can include a car crash, bus crash, boating accident, fire, a drowning and more and will test all the theories and practices that the students learned over the course of CERT training.


NEMA offers CERT training throughout the year so be on the lookout for our next training session!