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Plan Now to Bring your Skills and Resources to a Future Emergency

[Posted January 28, 2022]

Contributed by Robin Jensen, Patrick Pangburn and Liz Safran for Hillsdale NET

Emergency response comes in many forms and doesn’t always require hours of advance training. Connect with the Hillsdale Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) now to be ready to mobilize your skills and resources to help your community following a natural disaster.

During the power outage in the February 2021 ice storm, were you the one who invited neighbors to come over to charge their phones on your generator? Or maybe you used your chainsaw to help a neighbor cut up a fallen tree that was blocking the street in front of their house. During the wildfires of 2020, did you buy groceries for an elderly neighbor who had respiratory problems and couldn’t go out? Is someone in your household experienced with construction equipment? First aid? Ham radio? Drones?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, or have other expertise or equipment that could be useful following a disaster, Hillsdale NET invites you to join the team as an Affiliated Trained Volunteer (ATV).

Critically needed areas of expertise in a disaster response could include medical, construction or structural engineering, clerical, amateur radio, psychology/crisis counseling, childcare, firefighting, search and rescue, large-scale food preparation, foreign language skills. Some resources you might have that could be useful following a disaster are ham radios, generators, a woodshop or workshop, specialty tools, drone, solar chargers.

By connecting with you now, in non-emergency times, Hillsdale NET aims to build a more resilient community during times of crisis.

To become an ATV, fill out the interest form here.

Following completion of a background check and a short orientation (offered 3-4 times a year), you will receive an ID card that will allow you to be recognized by NET members in your neighborhood as a skilled volunteer during disaster response. If you wish, you can sign up to receive weekly bulletins with training and volunteer opportunities.

Ready for a bigger commitment? Read about the NET program here. The first in-person training since early 2020 is scheduled to begin in February. More info and registration here. Enrollment is limited and COVID vaccinations are required.

Hillsdale NET is a group of volunteers trained by the Bureau of Emergency Management (PBEM) to be first responders in emergencies and assist the authorities in initial crisis management.

Feel free to email with questions or to let us know that you would like to be on our email list. Your local NET team looks forward to getting to know you!


What skills or resources could you use to help your neighbors following a disaster? Let us know.


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