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Maine VolunteerFare

Maine's Volunteer Emergency Units

Published May 17, 2006


The American Red Cross mission is to help people prevent, prepare for and cope with emergencies through programs that help enhance individual self-reliance and concern for others. Earthquakes, Hurricanes, Floods, Fires, and Ice Storms: disasters that effect our families, friends, and neighbors. During critical times like these, the Red Cross helps people find a place to live, provides them with food and clothing, and helps them put their live back together. There is an on-going need for Disaster volunteers, ready to support Red Cross preparedness and relief efforts and for educating our communities about Red Cross services.

Chapters in Maine: United Valley Chapter (Lewiston), Mid-Coast Chapter (Topsham), Pine Tree Chapter (Bangor), and American Red Cross of Southern Maine (Portland)


VOAD coordinates planning efforts by many voluntary organizations responding to disaster. Member organizations provide more effective and less duplication in service by getting together before disasters strike. Once disasters occur, Maine VOAD encourages members and other voluntary agencies to convene on site. This cooperative effort has proven to be the most effective way for a wide variety of volunteers and organizations to work together in a crisis.

VOAD serves member organizations through:

Communication - disseminating information through electronic mechanisms, its Newsletter, the directory, research and demonstration, case studies, and critique.

Cooperation - creating a climate for cooperation at all levels (including grass roots) and providing information.

Coordination - coordinating policy among member organizations and serving as a liaison, advocate, and national voice.

Education - providing training and increasing awareness and preparedness in each organization.

Leadership Development - giving volunteer leaders training and support so as to build effective state VOAD organizations.

Mitigation - supporting the efforts of federal, state, and local agencies and governments and supporting appropriate legislation.

Convening Mechanisms - putting on seminars, meetings, board meetings, regional conferences, training programs, and local conferences.

Outreach - encouraging the formation of and giving guidance to state and regional voluntary organizations active in disaster relief.


Robert Van Deventer


The mission of Citizen Corps is to harness the power of every individual through education, training, and volunteer service

to make communities safer, stronger, and better prepared to respond to the threats of terrorism, crime, public health issues, and disasters of all kinds.

The Citizen Corps mission is accomplished through a national network of state, local, and tribal Citizen Corps Councils. These Councils build on community strengths to implement the Citizen Corps programs and will carry out a local strategy to have every American participate.

Chapters in Maine:

Aroostook County, Cumberland County, Somerset County, Waldo County, and York County Citizen Corps


Olan Johnston


The mission of the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is to establish teams of local volunteer medical and public health professionals who can contribute their skills and expertise throughout the year and during times of community need.

MRC units are community-based and function as a way to locally organize and utilize volunteers who want to donate their time and expertise to prepare for and respond to emergencies and promote healthy living throughout the year. MRC volunteers supplement existing emergency and public health resources.

MRC volunteers include medical and public health professionals such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists, dentists, veterinarians, and epidemiologists. Many community members?interpreters, chaplains, office workers, legal advisors, and others?can fill key support positions.

MRC units are provided specific areas to target that strengthen the public health infrastructure of their communities by U.S. Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona. VADM Carmona has outlined his priorities for the health of individuals, and the nation as a whole, which also serve as a guide to the MRC. The overarching goal is to improve health literacy, and in support of this, he wants us to work towards increasing disease prevention, eliminating health disparities, and improving public health preparedness.

MRC volunteers can choose to support communities in need nationwide. When the southeast was battered by hurricanes in 2004, MRC volunteers in the affected areas and beyond helped communities by filling in at local hospitals, assisting their neighbors at local shelters, and providing first aid to those injured by the storms. During this 2-month period, more than 30 MRC units worked as part of the relief efforts, including those whose volunteers were called in from across the country to assist the American Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Chapters in Maine: Franklin County MRC (Chesterville, Farmington, industry), Oxford County MRC (Rumford and Rumford Point), Eastern Maine Healthcare (Bangor), Southern Maine MRC (Arundel, Kennebunkport), and Waldo County MRC (Waldo, Swanville, Belfast).


Visit the Maine Medical Reserve Corps web-site.


TRC?s Emergency Response Corps is an AmeriCorps program that places individual AmeriCorps Members with host sites throughout South/Central Maine. The Emergency Response Corps was created in response to a crisis here in Maine where we are losing skilled emergency response volunteers at an alarming rate. While experienced emergency responders are nearing retirement age, fewer volunteers are entering the field to take their place. AmeriCorps Members typically serve at Fire Departments or Ambulance Services to assist in responding to emergencies while working to strengthen the departments volunteer recruitment and retention system. The length of the assignment is eleven months, forty hours per week. The Emergency Response Corps provides a wage and benefit package to the AmeriCorps Member worth approximately $17,000. The host site agrees to provide a cash match to the Emergency Response Corps, provide for the daily needs of the Member, and ensure that the AmeriCorps Member works on getting more volunteers to help sustain the departments? efforts.


Billye Senecal


Today, communities across Maine and the U.S. are actively engaged in Community Policing. Community Policing is an integral part of combating crime and improving the quality of life in the nation?s cities, towns and rural areas. Volunteers who wish to take part in protecting and informaing their community on combating crime can take MCPI training program. The program includes Basic and Executive Level Community Policing classes, Neighborhood Organizing, Community Policing Publications, Resource Materials, Seminars, Conferences, and Technical Assistance to Police Agencies and Community Groups. In partnership with University of Maine Augusta, volunteers wishing to take the course will receive a 21-Credit Certificate in Community Policing.


Larry Gilbert

MCPI, UMaine of Augusta

(207) 621-3480