Community Support Team

Registration for the Spring 2024 CERT class is now closed.
Please contact CERT Program Manager Gary Davidson with any questions.

Empower your community! Join our Community Support Team for disaster preparedness and planning. By acquiring basic training through our CST program, individuals aged 18 and older, living or working near Shawnee, can effectively manage emergencies. This helps alleviate pressure on emergency services, allowing prioritized assistance for those who need it most. Get started with our team by taking the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) class!
The Shawnee Fire Department Community Support Team (CST) program brings together dedicated community volunteers with essential training in preparedness and support skills. Our mission is threefold: first, to ensure personal preparedness and promote readiness within our community; second, to offer basic assistance to family, friends, neighbors, and others in our vicinity in the aftermath of a major emergency or disaster until professional help arrives; and third, to support professional responders if requested. Together, we strive to enhance the resilience and well-being of our community.

Strengthening Community Resilience through the Shawnee CST Program

Local governments diligently prepare for emergencies, yet unforeseen disasters can surpass immediate response capabilities. While external resources may activate, delays in reaching everyone in need can occur. The primary objective of the Community Support Team (CST) is to equip individuals with decision-making, organizational, and practical skills to provide immediate assistance to family, friends, associates, and neighbors while awaiting professional responders. Recognizing that people instinctively help others, CST aims to channel that goodwill into safe and effective support.

Key Goals of the Shawnee CST Program:

Personal Preparedness: Establish and maintain a personal preparedness level aligned with potential hazards.

  1. Safety First: Ensure personal safety while preventing actions that may compromise the safety of professional responders, disaster victims, or others in harm's way.
  2. Support Professional Responders: Collaborate with and support professional responders as requested during emergency situations.
  3. Professionalism: Conduct ourselves with professionalism across all facets of the program, fostering a culture of reliability and accountability.
  4. Acknowledgment and Respect: Earn and maintain acknowledgment and respect from area first responders and residents, reciprocating that respect to those we serve.
  5. Skill Enhancement: Continuously maintain and enhance preparedness and response skills through ongoing training and exercises.
  6. Response and Recovery: Actively participate in the response and recovery efforts of areas impacted by disaster, contributing to community rehabilitation.
  7. Promote Interest: Generate interest in the CST program through engagement with civic and community groups, encouraging broader community involvement.

Through these goals, the Shawnee CST program seeks to create a resilient community where individuals are empowered, prepared, and actively contribute to the well-being of those in need during times of crisis.


Empower yourself with our CERT class! Over two weeks and four sessions, you'll gain a deep understanding of the vital role the fire department plays in our community, along with the knowledge and skills to confidently respond to disasters. Program topics cover:

  • The Individual’s Role in Preparedness
  • Disaster Medical I & II
  • Fire Safety and Utility control
  • Terrorism and Disaster Psychology
  • Basic Search & Rescue
  • Introduction to the Incident Command System

To stay informed about our next CERT class, please share your contact information on the CST Interest Form. We'll ensure you receive timely notifications about upcoming sessions. Thank you for your interest in joining our Community Support Team!

For additional information about CST, feel free to contact Division Chief of Emergency Management, Matt Epperson, at (913) 631-1080.