Border Community Service
The mission of Border Community SERVICE (Special Emergency Response Volunteer Initiative for Community Empowerment) of Niagara University is to provide emergency preparedness training to citizens and to encourage their participation in opportunities that enhance regional emergency readiness. Border Community SERVICE training for citizen volunteers includes CERT (Community Emergency Response Team training) and MYN (Map Your Neighborhood).
The project also offers opportunities for trained volunteers to participate in activities designed to enhance regional emergency preparedness. BCS works with numerous emergency service partners to plan and participate in training exercises and drills on various preparedness levels. Border Community SERVICE volunteers also gain enhanced skills to be assistive in emergency operations such as PODs (Points of Distribution) and Disaster Shelter Management.
Border Community SERVICE provides significant community preparedness training in the WNY area. Currently, the project operates under funding from the City of Buffalo and Niagara County.
Community preparedness initiatives include:
- Community education at block clubs, schools, churches, senior centers and community agencies.
- Home-based emergency training to high-risk households with preparedness incentives through “Healthy Neighborhoods.”
- CERT training: a comprehensive training program that empowers citizens to respond to the needs of their family, friends, neighbors and colleagues in the event of a disaster.
- Support for a Bi-National Emergency Preparedness Conference.
- Continued collaboration with first responder agencies and other partners to present area Emergency Preparedness Resource Fairs, Health Department Point-Of-Distribution exercises, and training drills.
- Support to important community resources including the Niagara County Medical Reserve Corps.