Community Emergency Response Team

Nashua CERT Basic Training Class Pic - Oct 2019

Nashua hosted it’s 24th Community Emergency Response Team Basic Training class in May 2019. 

Congratulations to our newest graduates!

Our next class is on hold... stay tuned for updates!

To be notified about future CERT classes, join our notification list.

CERTs COVID-19 Response

The Greater Nashua CERT was activated for the COVID-19 response in March 2020 when they helped stand up the regional Alternate Care Site at Nashua High School South. They were instrumental in helping set up the 170 bed facility, as they were in charge of inventory and supplies and maintained all necessary equipment. CERT was also involved in the City’s testing sites, assisting to set up test materials and kits, and standing up vaccine sites. Thank you to our CERT members for your hard work and dedication to the Greater Nashua community!

“The knowledge I’ve gained through my CERT training has been invaluable. Allowing me to be confident enough to help in real life emergencies until Police, Fire, and EMTs arrived. For example, using a fire extinguisher to put out a bark mulch fire and doing an initial patient injury assessment at a roll over motor vehicle accident.” - Christine, Greater Nashua CERT Member

“I feel I’ve really made a difference in my community, working with Nashua CERT. From our Nashua Public Health sponsors, to Police and Fire partners, and our CERT Team Leaders and Managers, everyone is pulling in the same direction - to help others in need." - Charles, Greater Nashua CERT Member

What is CERT?

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 an all-risk, all-hazard training. This valuable course is designed to help you protect yourself, your family, your neighbors, and your neighborhood 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 others in need without the training, one goal of the CERT program is to help them do so effectively and efficiently without placing themselves in unnecessary danger.

In the CERT training, citizens learn to:

  • Collect disaster intelligence to support first responder efforts
  • Manage utilities and put out small fires
  • Organize themselves and spontaneous volunteers to be effective
  • Provide basic medical aid
  • Search for and rescue victims safely
  • Treat the three medical killers by opening airways, controlling bleeding, and treating for shock

Why participate in CERT?

Well, it’s like paying for car insurance. You might never need insurance or CERT and you would hope not to use it. But if the occasion arises, having the CERT training, just like having car insurance, means you’re as ready as you can be to help yourself, your family and your neighborhood.

How To Join

CERT members receive 20 hours of initial training. The training can be broken down into a number of time blocks depending on availability and that of other volunteers. We may offer it a few nights spread out over a couple of weeks, a weekend, or a combination of both. We try to schedule CERT so that there are opportunities to make up missed modules. In particular, we like to hold it multiple times throughout the year, and it is important for us to know what time of the year is best for you.

The training is followed by drills, exercises, and many opportunities to assist the City of Nashua Emergency Management at local incidents. CERT is provided free of charge in Greater Nashua. If you are interested in attending, you can fill out our Upcoming CERT Training Mailing List to notify us that you are interested in getting involved. We will contact you to register you for an upcoming class as one becomes available.

You can also organize a class for your neighborhood, business, or community group. You need a minimum of 20 people to be trained and a location to hold the training. Call the City of Nashua Division of Public Health and Community Services at 603-589-4560 to schedule your class.

How To Volunteer

Everyone has a skill that we need before, during, and after disaster. 

While CERT provides some basic disaster preparedness skills, many are interested in volunteering beyond. We are looking for volunteers that are everything from certified doctors/nurses/paramedics to licensed pilots and engineers. Additionally, volunteers with useful skills in everything from Information Technology (IT) systems to traffic control to handling hazardous materials and dealing with animals.

Volunteers can be of all shapes and sizes, with no limitation on disabilities or age. We can use volunteers that want to provide services from their own home, provide services at a shelter, help out in our Emergency Operations Center (EOC), among other opportunities. It’s a great opportunity for those that are retired or college students looking for job experience. If you are not interested in being involved during the disaster, we can use your skills to help the City prepare BEFORE the disaster. If you would are interested in volunteering with Nashua Public Health Emergency Preparedness, please contact us at 603-589-4569 or by email.

Additional Trainings

As we continue to build our volunteer program, we are looking at offering additional classes like SKYWARN, amateur radio, damage assessment, and CPR/AED training. These training opportunities will be offered to Greater Nashua volunteers on a first come, first served basis. 

  1. Patrick Henry

    Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator