Early Response Training (ERT)

Early Response Training (ERT)
Saturday, October 21, 2017

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Aldersgate UMC
1621 Thornton Ave
Butte, MT

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neflint@gmail.com / sbmcconnell06@gmail.com

Nancy Flint / Sally McConnell

Oct. 21 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Registration fee: $10
Location: Aldersgate UMC, Butte, MT

The mission of an Early Response Team is to provide a caring Christian presence in the aftermath of a disaster.

This team is neither a first response group of emergency workers nor a recovery rebuild or repair team; rather it fills a specific need in the early days after a disaster to establish the presence of the church. It is a cooperative effort between the United Methodist Committee on Relief and the
United Methodist Volunteers in Mission.
ER Teams are trained primarily to respond within their own area.

What do Early Response Teams do?

  1. Provide a Christian presence.
  2. Take steps to prevent further damage to a family’s personal property (stabilize) which might involve tarping, debris removal, cleaning out a flooded home.
  3. Teams might be asked to manage donated materials, gather information, or other things deemed necessary by the community
  4. Observe survivor’s needs and report these to the local operations.
  5. Be a part of the caring ministry of ‘listeners’ who will help the survivor begin to heal.
Teams do not perform work on a home that might jeopardize the survivor’s eligibility for assistance from insurance or government agencies.

Basic ERT Member Training (8 Hours)
All ERT members are trained by authorized UMCOR trainers. Participants learn the basics of disaster response, including how to stabilize and secure homes safely, and how to work effectively with survivors and others on the response team. This standardized class is required for the basic ERT UMCOR identification badge.

While this training will not help the immediate need, there is likely another wildfire season or possibly spring or fall flooding. Natural disasters are not a matter of “if” but “when”. Let's be ready to respond the next time.

It is also hoped that perhaps this team, once trained and formed, would be available to go to communities in Montana and Wyoming for work weekends once in a while where there are needs.  This would keep the team current and responding to other needs, not just disasters.