Rosebud CERT Class Learns How to Manage Crises

Protect people, property, and the environment – those are the values taught in Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training, offered through PWNA’s Northern Plains Reservation Aid (NPRA) program. Our instructor, Harold, recently led a CERT training in South Dakota’s Rosebud Reservation and told the class, “If you have the education and power to know what to do, you can save lives.” Participant Misty helped her tribe through a major snowstorm and will use her new CERT skills as an important resource within her community this winter.

Rosebud CERT Class Learns How to Manage Crises

Protect people, property, and the environment – those are the values taught in Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training, offered through the Northern Plains Reservation Aid (NPRA) program of Partnership With Native Americans (PWNA). Our instructor, Harold, recently led a CERT training in South Dakota’s Rosebud Reservation.

Harold noted that there is currently no operations plan for the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, but the tribe is starting to take matters over from the county. He shared, “Education is power. If you have the education and power to know what to do, you can save lives. I’m thankful for PWNA to allow me to give education that tribes should already have.”

CERT participants learn best practices for managing crises and become first responders in their communities. Andrea, the tribe’s emergency manager, described a major snowstorm last winter that affected several tribal communities. While the nearest hospital is in Rosebud, Andrea noted that “when people in outer communities needed health care, it was a hindrance to travel. They weren’t able to get help.” People who needed dialysis or chemo treatment or who were low on oxygen or insulin worried Andrea the most. “Those high-risk individuals are the ones we’re really concerned about – keeping them healthy and ensuring ongoing health needs. We’re working on a plan to bring patients into a comfortable housing center before the next storm.”

Andrea mentioned that many community members who stepped up to help during the storm had completed our CERT training a few months prior. Other helpers are taking the training now. Andrea told us, “A lot of people here were involved in emergency protective measures during the blizzard. They braved the elements and showed extreme dedication.”

40-year-old Misty played a crucial role in helping her tribe through the storm, which she said lasted three weeks with 20-foot snowbanks. When the storm shut local resources down, and many folks were stuck at home, Misty and her husband delivered lifesaving resources to various communities. She shared, “We delivered so many food boxes, water, diapers, baby formula, heaters, and truckloads of firewood to every community we could. My husband and I took turns walking the food boxes to houses because the wind was blowing so bad that we couldn’t both be out of the vehicle for our safety.” Misty also noted, “We couldn’t get a snowplow in for a month, so we borrowed snowmobiles to get supplies.”

Already an outstanding community member, Misty enrolled in our CERT training to be even more of a help this coming winter. She said of the training, “It helps people, and it’s a good resource to have in the winter.” Donate to NPRA so that more community heroes like Misty can help their people in times of need.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*
*