Community Emergency Response Teams
Local government prepares for everyday emergencies. However, during a disaster, the number and scope of incidents can overwhelm conventional emergency services. The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is all-hazard training. This valuable course is designed to help citizens protect themselves, their family, and their neighbors in an emergency situation.

CERT is a positive and realistic approach to emergency and disaster situations where citizens may initially be on their own and their actions can make a difference. While people will respond to help others in need without the training, one goal of the CERT program is to prepare them to do so effectively and efficiently without placing themselves in unnecessary danger.


CERT personnel are trained to:

CERT members DO NOT:

CERT members are encouraged to:

CERTs are not intended to replace a community's response capability, but rather, to serve as an important supplement to it.

CERT members must keep their own safety in mind as their first priority. CERT volunteers must know their capabilities and the limitations of their training and equipment and work within those limitations.

CERTs are considered "Good Samaritans" and are covered under the Volunteer Protection Act. CERT volunteers do not have any authority beyond serving as a "Good Samaritan" when helping others. When deployed appropriately, however, CERTs can complement and enhance first-response capability in neighborhoods and workplaces by ensuring the safety of themselves and their families working outward to the neighborhood or office and beyond until first responders arrive. CERTs can then assist first-response personnel as requested.




Training Opportunities

Please complete an application and you will be notified when the future training is scheduled.


Class Topics

Cherokee Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management sponsors CERT training in Cherokee County.

CERT training consists of approximately 20 hours of initial instruction. Classes are taught by emergency responders from your community. Topics include:


Frequently Asked Questions

How much time will I be required to commit?

You will be required to complete the initial training course, and to attend annual refresher courses as scheduled. You may be asked to volunteer for projects from time to time, but there will be no obligation in those instances.

Where can I get my CERT ID?

At the completion of the class your CERT ID will be provided to you by the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management. If your ID is lost or stolen please email maharris@cherokeega.com or call (678) 493-4038.

What if I move to another area?

If you move to another location within Cherokee County, you should notify your CERT liaison maharris@cherokeega.com or call (678) 493-4038 with your new contact information. If you move to a different county, you should return your Cherokee County CERT ID card and contact the Emergency Management Agency in your new county to find out if they have a CERT program that you can become involved in.

How will CERT be deployed during an emergency?

CERT may be deployed by the Division of Emergency Management. If a disaster happens in your neighborhood, you should not wait to be notified, you may self-deploy. You should take care of yourself and your family first and then proceed to help your neighbors. You should never self-deploy as a CERT member outside of your neighborhood.

Where can I find out about upcoming Training or Refresher Courses?

As a CERT member you will be notified by email about upcoming training courses.

How can I find out about upcoming classes?

Make sure to check our website frequently, also look for advertisements in your local newspaper and on local radio stations.

Why do authorities sometimes request no more volunteers?

At times of emergency, many of us feel driven to help. That is why we are part of CERT. The logistics of scheduling volunteer teams can become overwhelming. What we can do during an emergency is to remain ready and prepared in our own neighborhoods. Our duty and our best aid to the disaster relief effort is to remain prepared to respond right where we are.

I don't see my question on this list?

If you have a question that is not on this list please email maharris@cherokeega.com or call (678) 493-4038.




Contact Information

Division of Emergency Management 
CERT Liaison
Mark Harris
Office Phone:  678-493-4038
Fax:  678-493-4027
Email: maharris@cherokeega.com

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