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Polk County Oregon CERT

CERT Basic Course: Winter/Spring 2020

Our next offering of the Basic Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) course begins on February 4th! The 10-week course will run on Tuesday evenings from 6 pm – 9 pm, February 4th – April 7th, 2020. Course location is the Polk Co. Fire District #1 training room, 1800 Monmouth St., Independence, OR. The course is free and is appropriate for ages 14 and up. There are no required books or hidden fees. Everything you need will be provided for you.

We currently have several open spots on our team. However, we also understand the value of increasing our community’s number of trained spontaneous volunteers. Gaining the skills you need to help yourself, your family and your neighborhoods will make a huge difference during a large disaster. So, there is no requirement to join the team in order to take the course. During the course you will learn about risk factors and natural hazards both locally and across Oregon. You’ll also discover many ways that you can help your community both prepare for, and recover from, natural disasters.

Sign up for the CERT Basic Course Winter/Spring 2020


Polk County CERT: Knowledge is Power, Training is SurvivalThank you for visiting our website to learn more about the National CERT program as well as how we operate here in Polk County, Oregon.

Over the past 15 years our CERT has grown into a vibrant program that supports multiple agencies in our county:

  • Independence Police Department (Our Sponsoring Agency)
  • Monmouth Police Department
  • Dallas Police Department
  • Polk County Fire District #1
  • Western Oregon University

Our routine duties in support of these agencies encompass a range of functions that are constantly evolving to meet the needs of those agencies.  You will find our members working side by side each year with agency personnel at events such as:

  • WOU Commencement in Monmouth
  • Independence Western Days
  • Dallas Summerfest
  • Dallas Winterfest
  • National Night Out Against Crime across all three communities
  • Independence Hop and Heritage Festival
  • Dallas Glow Run

In addition to running 3 Basic CERT Courses for our own program each year, we continue to support and co-instruct the newly formed Campus CERT Program at Western Oregon University.  Through this partnership we are able to offer the Basic CERT Course in three languages; English, Spanish and ASL.

Statewide, our Senior Instructional Team has been delivering low/no cost CERT courses sanctioned and certificated by the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OEM) since 2014. We strive in our deliveries to concisely mirror the current best practices taught by the Emergency Management Institute (EMI) located at the National Emergency Training Center (NETC) in Emmitsburg, MD.  Courses available include:

  • (G317) CERT Basic Course
  • (G428) CERT Train the Trainer – TTT
  • (G427)CERT Program Manager

Our ability to bring CERTs together in these courses has been a tremendous learning opportunity for both the participants and our instructors. We greatly enjoy mentoring emergent programs as well as sharing common struggles and success stories we’ve heard from others, helping to build a stronger statewide network of successful and engaged CERT programs across Oregon.

I’ve been a part of this program since 2003, working my way through the ranks as a Team Member, Team Lead, Trainer, and currently serving as the Program Coordinator and Course Manager. However you choose to serve in our program, I’m confident that you will find your experience to be a truly rewarding one.

Kimber Townsend
Program & Training Coordinator, Polk County CERT
Independence Police Department
Polk CERT Facebook page