Community Emergency Response Team

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations.

CERT logo

Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.

2024 Basic CERT Training Schedule

The New Castle County Office of Emergency Management has announced its 2023 schedule for Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training. This 13 hour training program will be provided free of charge on the following dates and locations:

April Basic CERT: Friday, April 12th, 5:00pm-9:30pm and Saturday, April 13th, 8:00am-4:30pm, Newark Senior Center, 200 Whitechapel Drive, Newark, DE 19713.

September Basic CERT: Friday, September 20th, 5:00pm-9:30pm and Saturday, September 21st, 8:00am-4:30pm, Appoquinimink Library, 204 East Main Street, Middletown, DE 19709.

How to Enroll

To enroll in the other classes, please visit the New Castle County Department of Community Services at:

Enter CERT into the Search line to see the list of available CERT Courses.

For further information on CERT, please contact the New Castle County Office of Emergency Management at 395-2700.

** We highly recommend taking the "New Castle County Online/hybrid" course offered by NCC in cooperation with the University of Utah and National CERT Association prior to the first day of class. This course will introduce you to the basics of CERT at your own pace, so you don't feel overwhelmed with the fast pace of the classroom portion. The Online Course can be found here: NCC Online CERT Course Registration. The Course is about 12 hours long and can be saved and continued at your own pace. **

Course Description

During this 2 day, 13 hour course of instruction, students will learn a variety of hazard awareness and emergency preparedness skills which will make them and their families better equipped to deal with all hazards emergency situations, as well as assist first responders and emergency management officials in certain aspects of response and post event recovery activities.

Course curriculum includes American Heart Association CPR/AED Certification; basic first aid; hazardous materials awareness training; basic family preparedness strategies; proper use of home and office fire extinguishers; search and rescue; and more. Students also receive a CERT participant’s training manual, and a CERT backpack with basic personal protective equipment including hard hat, gloves, safety glasses, and a flashlight.

Students will be provided a light dinner at the Friday evening sessions, and breakfast and lunch at the Saturday session, at no cost.

Advanced CERT Training

In addition to the Basic CERT courses noted above, NCC OEM will also hold Advanced CERT training at the Delaware State Fire Training Center, 2311 MacArthur Drive, New Castle DE, 19720, on:

Saturday, October 19th, 8:00am-4:00pm

The Advanced CERT class is open to all persons who have completed the Basic CERT class within the past 3 years. The Advanced CERT class builds upon the knowledge and practical skills acquired in the basic class. The Advanced class will include: leadership and team building exercises oriented to disaster response scenarios; advanced search and rescue training; and additional fire fighting training. This Advanced training is much more hands on and participatory than the basic CERT class. A box lunch will be provided at no cost.

To enroll in the Advanced class, please visit the New Castle County Department of Community Service online registration site at:  

Enter CERT into the Search line to see the list of available CERT Courses.

CERT Continuing Education Training

These trainings are open to prior Basic CERT graduates who wish to further their knowledge for specific missions or enrichment of Community Response Team skills.

March Continuing Education - To be determined.

April Continuing Education - To be determined.

Registration Form - Coming Soon 

About the CERT Program

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) concept was developed and implemented by the Los Angeles City Fire Department (LAFD) in 1985. The Whittier Narrows earthquake in 1987 not only underscored the area-wide threat of a major disaster in California, but also confirmed the need for training civilians to meet their community’s immediate needs after a disastrous event. As a result, the LAFD created the Disaster Preparedness Division to provide training to citizens as well as private and government employees.

Since 1993 when this training was made available nationally by FEMA, communities in 28 states and Puerto Rico have conducted CERT training.


Our Mission

"New Castle County Citizen Corps embraces personal preparedness, personal responsibility, and the spirit of volunteerism. Our mission is to educate and prepare New Castle County residents and visitors for all emergencies, through public education, community outreach, and training. Citizen Corps seeks to engage New Castle County residents through volunteer service to create and sustain safe, vibrant, and livable communities."