Portsmouth Launches Community Resilience Team to Help in Crisis Situations

International emergency response team, Serve On, are starting a Community Resilience Team for Portsmouth to train local residents to support local emergency services in crisis and emergency situations. 

Serve On – which also provides international emergency response teams, including teams deployed to Haiti in 2010 and Nepal earlier this year – is starting a Portsmouth Community Resilience Team launching next week. The programme is part of a national network of formally trained Community Resilience Teams aiming to support local services in their response to crisis situations, emergencies and major incidents.

Serve On’s Community Resilience Teams engage, recruit and train members of the public who want to help other people in emergency situations, including young people, long term unemployed, ex-military and emergency service personnel.

The training to be part of the Community Resilience Team in Portsmouth is open to all ages and abilities, with the emphasis being on giving local people the skills to respond to future emergencies in Portsmouth, including flooding, power cuts, supporting vulnerable people,  missing person searches and other major incidents.

Training is free and takes an average of one year to complete, resulting in an accredited Level 3 qualification in social services, called Community Emergency Responder Search and Recovery.

Anyone interested in finding out more about the programme can attend an Open Evening to find out more, ask questions and sign up. Those enrolled on the programme will need to commit to two training sessions per month on Tuesday evenings between 7-9pm.

Naomi Morris of Serve On – who also serves on the international emergency response team – said, ‘We recruit local people to be trained by experienced team leaders so that they have the skills to respond to a wide range of emergencies. As well as upskilling local people, the training also empowers the local community to support local services in times of crisis or emergency.

‘Anyone can join, it doesn’t matter what age you are, or what skills you have. Most of all, we’re looking for people who want to play a role in helping their city in times of emergency or crisis. You just have to want to be part of something big!’

Local residents interested in finding out more can attend the Portsmouth Community Resilience Team Open Evening on Tuesday 27th October, 7pm, at John Pounds Centre, Portsea.


Reporting by Sarah Cheverton. Photography by Heather Freathy.