Youth Preparedness Events Toolkit

2.1 Student Participants

Student participants are the most obvious team of people to plan for. These participants will come in teams of five to nine students with one or two adult sponsors. This training style is best suited to teams of students from one community or school attending together as opposed to individuals because of the variety of topics covered throughout the CERT curriculum. Different students tend to latch on to different sections better and this allows the team to receive a well-rounded training.

We suggest teams go through a two-step process:
  1. Initial information is gathered about the team members, activities they have participated in, initial action plan idea, and training they have previously received.
    Team Application
  2. Once teams have been selected you can collect the necessary data on each participant (age or grade, gender, parent information, emergency contact, etc.) as well as completing a Code of Conduct and Liability Release Form.
    Participant Registration
    Code of Conduct and Liability Release Form

The following criteria can help you select which teams attend – edit this Team Scoring Criteria to reflect the criteria that are most important to you:

  • Geographic: are you trying to reach participants from a certain region or spread across the state or district?
  • Experience: do you want teams who already have some basic preparedness training or those who are brand new to the topic?
  • Established: would it be better to bring in teams who have already been active in their communities or groups that are just forming and are dedicated to this topic?
  • Project Idea: is the project they propose in their application realistic and obtainable?
  • Community partnerships: are you looking for a team that has no support or that has resources available to them?

We recommend having teams submit one or two letters of support from either their community or city officials (police chief, mayor, etc.) or from their school district (principal, superintendent, etc.).

A few things to consider about your student participants:

  • Camp is full of long days and late nights.
  • Many of the tasks and exercises are physically demanding.
  • CERT curriculum can become mentally straining and highly technical.

For these reasons, we recommend these camps focus solely on high school students. While the information and activities can be adapted for middle school students, it makes the training a little more difficult to implement. We set high expectations for the students and they never fail to rise to the challenge! These expectations can be found in the Student Welcome Packet that each accepted team member will receive.