Red Cross Disaster Reserve Partner Group
The following is a message from Jeff Tkacs, Cortlandt Homeland Safety Coordinator.  The Village of Croton-on-Hudson is working in conjunction with the Town of Cortlandt on emergency planning and our residents are invited to participate in this effort.  


Hurricane Katrina’s devastation and recovery efforts in the south have clearly shown the critical need for and the benefits of local volunteer programs.  Much of the early response and initial recovery is focused on the human needs aspects of shelter, food, water, and mental health assistance.

The time to think about getting involved locally is now.  The Red Cross and other volunteer agencies providing disaster relief need a constant supply of trained volunteers.  The volunteers we have seen on TV are individuals that have previously been trained in Mass Care and other Shelter Operations Red Cross courses.  These individuals did not awake one morning and suddenly make a call to volunteer and then were deployed in the Gulf.

The Town of Cortlandt currently is conducting an open recruitment period for local residents to join an existing small group of Red Cross Disaster Reserve Partner Group.  The primary purpose of this group is to provide local shelter operations in the event of a local disaster that displaces local residents.  The Town owns and operates a disaster supply trailer with the basic shelter supplies for 100 people.

Training programs will be held in the fall and over the winter.  A commitment of a total 14 hours of training in 4 courses is needed.  These will be held in Cortlandt.  A video of the type of work and demonstration of a shelter is available for loan; this video is often shown on Cortlandt cable CH 78.

Interested individuals must be at least age 18, and no previous first responder training is required.

To act and volunteer locally, call Jeff Tkacs, Cortlandt Homeland Safety Coordinator, 914-734-2029, or e-mail