Elk Grove CERT Volunteers Need Help As Grants Dry Up
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ELK GROVE (CBS13) — Volunteers who help police and fire departments in times of crisis are now in a crisis of their own, lacking money to keep going.
The Elk Grove-Galt Community Emergency Response Team is ready to help in emergency situations where there aren’t enough first responders.
But now CERT needs the community’s help to keep going.
“CERT members, the department and other agencies in the county are working to try to find the funding sources to keep this program going,” said Cosumnes Fire Deputy Chief John Michelini.
He says federal grants have run out, so volunteers are asking people to step up and donate.
“It’s really tough to take operational money that isn’t sufficient to even have all of our fire stations operating to give to this program,” said Michelini.
The group worries losing the program would be a blow to the community.
“The CERT programs are kind of behind the scenes, until a big disaster hits,” he said. “Then we’ll notice it.”
Not only do the volunteers prepare for disasters, they help secure crime scenes, most notably for two officers killed in the line of duty in recent years.
The grant for the program runs out next month.