Scouts of the Redwood Empire Council in Petaluma, CA received the privilege of a lifetime on January 28 when they were honored at The White House for their incredible efforts and partnership with the National Strategy Supporting Youth Preparedness program, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“We look at our program as being boy led, boy done,” said assistant Scoutmaster Duncan Flett, who was part of the five-person group representing the Boy Scout troop in Washington, D.C. “I didn’t realize the scope until we were invited to the White House. The White House recognized the boys quite well.”
Boy Scouts, Michael F. and Tucker C., accepted the certificate on behalf of their troop for their efforts to show how to prepare and react in an emergency.
The Scouts and adults represented are also members of the Order of the Arrow (OA), Scouting’s National Honor Society.
The troop organized their first Petaluma Emergency Preparedness Fair in September of 2013 that offered a variety of hands-on demonstrations equipped to train attendees in crisis situations. Demonstrations included CPR, emergency survival camping, and use of emergency equipment.
The fair attracted several local, federal, and state organizations, including FEMA, the American Red Cross, local Petaluma and Sonoma County fire and police departments, U.S. Coast Guard first responders, the California Highway Patrol, and elected officials.
“We had Scouts working on the preparedness program with adults guiding it”, said Flett. “We contacted FEMA when we were looking for assistance. In mid-December, FEMA advised us we were going to be part of its national strategy program.”
FEMA, along with the Red Cross and the Department of Education developed the “National Strategy for Youth Preparedness Education: Empowering, Educating and Building Resilience.” The program outlines a vision for young men and women providing nine priority steps that local, state, and national partners can take to help prepare for emergencies.
For the complete story, check out the original article at Petaluma 360.