Red Cross seek­ing leader for new team

North Taranaki Midweek - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - CHRISTINE WALSH

A new Red Cross Com­mu­nity Relief Team (CRT) that would act in an emer­gency when in­structed by Civil De­fence is com­ing Taranaki’s way.

The relief team will have 10 vol­un­teers in­clud­ing a team leader, and have a wel­fare trailer with all the gears, a ded­i­cated ve­hi­cle is on the cards fur­ther down the track.

The call goes out for the right per­son to lead the CRT to par­tic­i­pate in early dis­as­ter relief ac­tiv­i­ties. Once they find hi­mor-her, then comes re­cruit­ing the rest of the crew.

This is a great op­por­tu­nity for some­one to lead a Red Cross team when an emer­gency oc­curs ei­ther lo­cally, re­gion­ally or na­tion­ally.

‘‘They’ll ob­vi­ously need lead­er­ship skills, and I guess com­mu­ni­ca­tion is a big one,’’ Red Cross Ser­vice Cen­tre co­or­di­na­tor Jess Bur­rows said.

‘‘Taranaki has two main ac­cess points, if they are made in­ac­ces­si­ble than we’re iso­lated from the rest of the coun­try.’’

Bur­rows said hav­ing a lo­cal team that could come to­gether quickly and were all trained would en­able them to as­sist straight away.

‘‘There are huge risks in Taranaki. We are lucky we haven’t had many I guess in the last 20 or 30 years,’’ said Civil De­fences, Katie Hoggs.

Hoggs said they saw the CRT be­ing used in the ini­tial phases of an emer­gency, in par­tic­u­lar pro­vid­ing ex­tra hands on deck to work with the po­lice and the fire ser­vice.

‘‘The ini­tial day of set­ting up a CD cen­tre they could work in that do­ing some of the wel­fare stuff, do­ing out­reach and mak­ing sure peo­ple are OK,’’ she said.

‘‘Red Cross don’t just chuck you out there and hope for the best. The teams will have on­go­ing monthly train­ing too,’’ she said.

‘‘Hav­ing the ex­tra ca­pac­ity will mean we as a re­gion can re­spond bet­ter.’’

CRT mem­bers are lo­cally sourced and trained Red Cross Dis­as­ter Relief vol­un­teers who take part in early dis­as­ter relief ac­tiv­i­ties, com­mu­nity pre­pared­ness pro­grammes and pro­mote re­silience in their com­mu­nity.

They will be sup­port­ing the com­mu­nity by pro­vid­ing wel­fare ser­vices in­clud­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal first aid, dis­tribut­ing re­fresh­ments and blan­kets at a com­mu­nity evac­u­a­tion cen­tre.

If you are in­ter­ested email: new­ply­mouth@red­cross.org.nz or phone (06) 759 4697.

CHRISTINE WALSH

Civil De­fence’s Katie Hoggs and Red Cross Taranaki’s Jess Bur­rows are re­cruit­ing for relief team mem­bers.

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