Interested in Being of Service To Your Community?
By simply contacting us and inquiring, you will have completed the first step. The primary requirement for every TCEMA volunteer is a sincere desire to help one’s neighbors in a time of need. Becoming a volunteer requires a commitment of time, talent, and energy. Volunteers participate in independent self-paced online training, instructor-led classroom training, exercises, and actual emergency operations. Because every volunteer role is a position of public trust, TCEMA volunteers are screened through a background check conducted by the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.
- General Volunteer - General Volunteers is a group of volunteers that would like to learn more about Tuscaloosa County Emergency Management Agency while deciding which volunteer group is the best fit for them. General Volunteers will learn about Ham Radio, CERT, and EOC Volunteers, LEPC, and TCEMA equipment and capabilities. They may also help answer phones, talk about EMA at events, and help with daily office functions.
- Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) - The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program educates volunteers about disaster preparedness for the hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search, and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. CERT members will be able to attend monthly meetings and regular training to further their knowledge of preparedness.
- Amateur (Ham) Radio Operator - Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service is a group of amateur radio operators who volunteer for Emergency Management for the purpose of providing tactical emergency support radio communications to federal, state, and local governments in times of emergency, and to supplement, augment or replace radio communications wherever and whenever needed.
- Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Volunteer - The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) volunteer program allows individuals to serve the community by learning how to staff and manage the EOC. The program is a good opportunity for personnel with military, law enforcement, fire, or emergency management experience to build upon their skills. EOC Volunteers will go through training about the EOC and what needs to be done during an event.
- Internship - Internships though unpaid, provide knowledge and experience with County emergency preparedness and response actions. An internship will also: provide a better understanding of local first responders, a chance to take courses that can be used in a variety of job fields, contribute to community projects, and help one build resume experience.
Volunteer participation is open to individuals residing, working, or possessing an interest in Tuscaloosa County. Anyone who meets the following eligibility requirements is eligible to become a Volunteer:
- Be a minimum of 18 years of age at the time of application
- Ability to complete an approved volunteer selection process, including a Criminal Background Screening
- Be able to respond to emergency calls after a disaster, help with donation management or points of distribution, answering calls pertaining to severe weather, clerical work, damage assessments, coordinating volunteers, and or help with warehouse management
- Donate between 16 and 20 hours per month (if available) to TCEMA for training, work activities, and emergency response activities
- Possess a valid State of Alabama Driver's License
- TCEMA is a drug-free organization per the “Substance Abuse Policy” of the Tuscaloosa County Commission’s Employee Handbook. Therefore, the use of illegal substances and misuse use of prescription medications is prohibited. Volunteers are also prohibited from being under the influence of alcohol when partaking in any TCEMA activities.
- Ability to portray TCEMA in a professional manner and refrain from activities that would degrade or diminish the credibility
Applicants will be invited to attend our Open House, which gives a great overview of who we are. You will be able to meet TCEMA staff and complete a volunteer application. We ask that you also bring copies of any certifications or licenses you may have (i.e., Emergency Medical Technician, Hazardous Materials Operations Certification, Amateur Radio License, etc.). These items are not needed to be a volunteer, but those skills can become of use in your area of interest.
After the Open House, TCEMA will conduct an Application Review. Upon successful review of your application, you will be contacted with details for your Induction Ceremony and the New Volunteer Orientation.
What Can I Do While I Am Waiting To Attend An Open House?
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) through the Emergency Management Institute (EMI) offers a wide variety of Independent Study Courses that can be taken online. As part of the New Volunteer Basic Training, there are three classes we want you to take:
- Prior to enrolling in any FEMA course, you will need to apply for a FEMA SID
- Introduction to the Incident Command System (FEMA IS-100.C)
Basic Incident Command System for Initial Response (FEMA IS-200.C)
- National Incident Management System, an Overview (FEMA IS-700.B)
- National Response Framework, An Introduction (FEMA IS-800.D)
These training sessions are FREE. Once you have completed the course(s), you will need to take an open book test, you will receive your results via an email from the Emergency Management Institute (EMI). You can forward this via email to our office at email@example.com. Once you receive your certificate, we will need a copy for your file.
If you feel that your time and skills might be useful to TCEMA and would like to explore the volunteer opportunities available with our Agency, you may register to become a Volunteer by calling the Administrative / Office number at (205) 349-0150 or by clicking here to submit your information.