In 95% of emergencies, bystanders or victims themselves are the first to provide emergency assistance or to perform a rescue.

Experience proves that basic training in emergency preparedness and disaster survival improves the ability of citizens to survive until assistance arrives. The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program trains you to prepare for and respond to emergencies in your community. The City is a component of the national Citizen Corps Program, which aims to make communities safer, stronger and better prepared through education, training and volunteer service. On the local level, the City of Richmond CERT program maintains Mayor Stoney’s commitment to safe communities.


We are using a Hybrid CERT Training model that saves participants a full classroom day by providing lecture-based training units in an online format:



  • Estimated Time = 12 hours
  • Access it on your mobile device or computer.
  • Complete it at your own pace and at your convenience.
  • Course progress will be saved and can be resumed later.
  • Once you register, you will receive a link to the online portion of your training.
  • Certificate of online completion must be presented to instructor at the hands-on, practical portion of your training.


  • Estimated Time = 12 hours
  • SPRING 2022 Dates: April 23 & April 30
  • Must attend all days and times in order to receive final certificate of course completion.



See what the practical portion of your training will look like:


The Richmond CERT program is based on the Richmond Ready concept. The Office of Emergency Management coordinates the CERT Program.

Richmond CERT logo

Through CERT, you learn skills and concepts that prepare you to assist victims organize volunteers and help your neighborhood recover in the aftermath of a disaster. CERT also teaches you how to prepare your home, your family, and your community in order to reduce the impact of a disaster. Upon completion of the CERT program, you will be part of a team of volunteers that is ready and able to take action to prepare and protect your community.

The free CERT Training is a 24 hour course that consists of a combination of classroom and hands-on learning. You will train alongside members of your community that will be part of your CERT Team, as well as with participants from other communities. Classes are taught by the Richmond Fire Department and the Richmond Police Department.

CERT participants will learn about:

  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Fire Safety
  • Disaster Medical Operations
  • Light Search and Rescue
  • CERT Organization
  • Disaster Psychology
  • Terrorism
  • Disaster Simulation

Additional topics covered include a discussion of weather systems and a hands-on session provided by the American Red Cross.

For information about upcoming CERT and other training offered by the Office of Emergency Management call (804)646-2504.

For additional CERT training, the Emergency Management Institute offers an online Independent Study Course: Introduction to Community Emergency Response Teams.