When disaster strikes within the New England Conference and elsewhere, trained Early Response Teams (ERTs) together with the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) stand ready to provide relief, resources and caring Christian support. Here are some training opportunities designed to prepare you to help others in need.
Early Response Team (ERT) training – So many flooded communities need our help – are you ready to help your community or others in the event of a disaster? When disaster strikes, the local church is generally first to respond. Will you know what to do if a disaster hits your town? The Early Response Teams (ERTs) are the core groups of United Methodists helping disaster survivors. These responders are the ones on the frontline helping to put a tarp on the roof or comfort a survivor. They also remove debris from homes and help clean out the muck.
Early Response Team (ERT) members typically have a sense of adventure and a strong will to help those in need. They enjoy being the hands and feet of Christ to the survivors of disasters. Disaster preparedness, response, and recovery are vital parts of our mission that clearly fall within the parameters of our biblical calling to love one another.
Those with training in the United Methodist Committee on Relief’s (UMCOR) ERT process are a valuable community resource – and you could be one of them! This eight-hour training prepares ERTs to help.
ERT Re-certification courses (3 hours of review, new photo and background check for badge) are also available.
UMCOR’s Connecting Neighbors training – 'Disaster-Ready Congregations' modules focused on preparing churches to train others in individual readiness, church preparation and community engagement with the goal of inspiring congregations and communities to be better able to minimize disaster-caused harm to people and property and to respond to our neighbors in helpful, cooperative and caring ways on behalf of the church and in the spirit of Jesus Christ. Read why being prepared helps speed recovery after a disaster. (This four-hour training also includes some tips on preparing for an active shooter.)
United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) Team Leader training is designed to promote, encourage, and enable Christians to exemplify "Christian Love in Action" through short-term mission service with those in need throughout the United States and abroad. UMVIM provides opportunities for service by developing and nurturing relationships with domestic and international leaders. This 6-hour course is an important step in preparing for your journey.
Ministry of Care training provides an overview of a “ministry of presence” for disaster survivors, survivor caregivers, and congregations. This course, offered by the New England Conference of the United Methodist Church in partnership with the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), will show how Care Teams fit into overall UM disaster response that covers the basics of: