JEFFERSON CITY – Missouri Baptist Disaster Relief (DR) invites Missouri Baptists to regional training events in order be equipped to participate in disaster call-outs. There will be four training sessions held in different parts of the state to equip future and current volunteers.
Becoming a DR volunteer provides an excellent opportunity for hands-on service to people in need. Training is open to any member of a Southern Baptist church who is at least 18 years of age. Attending training does not obligate a person to serve but is necessary before serving.
Gaylon Moss, MBC DR state director told The Pathway he believes training is important for those currently trained (to update) their skills) and those considering becoming volunteers.
He added, “The most recent catastrophic tornado event on December 10th reminded us of the importance of a credentialed volunteer. Because local authorities set up road blocks to prevent non-credentialed groups from entering the disaster zone.”
Moss continued, “Training gives you an opportunity to sharpen your skills and be more effective and efficient in a larger effort and better organized than you could do by yourself in responding to a disaster.”
He and the DR leadership team will offer training in the following locations this spring:
• March 4-5, Lynnwood Baptist Church, Cape Girardeau
• April 8-9, First Baptist Church, Chillicothe
The training will begin on Friday evenings with registration at 5 PM, dinner at 6 PM and a general session on Intro to Disaster Relief at 6:45 PM. The next day, Saturday, the training continues after breakfast with specialization skills until lunchtime. After lunch regional meetings will take place. For those desiring to obtain certification as chaplains there are more specific requirements and the training begins at 1 PM on Friday and continues through the next day.
The specialization skills tracks are:
• Chain Saw
• Flood Recovery
• Mass Feeding
For those already trained in DR, who have certain prerequisites and are wishing to go deeper there will be training for:
• Incident Management Teams
The advance prerequisites and documents needed to enter into those tracks are available online at the MBC DR website.
For those receiving training for the first time and for those who are re-certifying (every 5 years) a background check must be completed. A link to a form is also available on the MBC DR website.
Recertification changes have been made. Most volunteers can re-certify in all of their disciplines in one day.
There is a $40 fee for first time volunteers. Those being re-certified (badge is expiring this year) will have a $25 fee. For those who are currently certified but are wishing to take additional cross training in other specialization skill areas the fee is $15.
Disaster Relief clothing and gear (t-shirts, hats, jackets, etc.) will be available for purchase in addition to some that is provided as a part of the registration.
Training manuals for Intro to DR and all the specialization skill areas are able to be downloaded in advance at the MBC DR training website.
Registration for the Cape Girardeau and Chillicothe training sessions this spring is open now at www.mobaptist.org/dr/dr-training. There will additional training events offered this fall in other regions of the state and information about those will be released in the summer.