NJ Disaster Response Crisis Counselor Certification Training

Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office and One Voice Partner with
New Jersey Disaster Response Crisis Counselor Certification Training Program

Hunterdon County Prosecutor Anthony P. Kearns, III and Chief of Detectives John J. Kuczynski announced that the Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office hosted NJ DRCC (New Jersey Disaster Response Crisis Counselor) Training for nearly 30 citizens from various backgrounds including clergy from Hunterdon's One Voice.

The training was conducted by the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) within the New Jersey Department of Human Services (NJDHS)Disaster and Terrorism Branch. http://www.njdrcc.org/

Among the attendees, clergy and chaplains Califon United Methodist Church, Islamic Center of Hunterdon County, Spruce Run Lutheran Church in Glen Gardner, Cherryville Baptist Church, Rockaway Reformed Church, and Christ Church of Montclair and Morristown.

The training began in March and concluded April 14, 2016. Assisting with the registration for One Voice was the SAFE Communities Coalition of Hunterdon and Somerset.

The NJ DRCC New Jersey Disaster Response Crisis Counselor instructors will be conducting additional training sessions in Hunterdon County starting April 26. This next session is sponsored by Hunterdon County Public Health Services more information can obtain at http://www.njdrcc.org/

According to Prosecutor Kearns, "The need for certifying crisis response workers became apparent in the aftermath of 9/11, when the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services operated its largest FEMA-funded disaster response program in its history. Many lessons were learned from 9/11, with one of the principle lessons being the critical need for an organized, well-trained and credentialed workforce."

The NJDRCC certification began as a credentialing pilot project in August 2004, when community forums were held to gather information and expertise on the subject. It became the Disaster and Terrorism Branch's mission to develop and sustain a qualified volunteer workforce.

Since the program has been active NJDRCC have assisted in many deployments of volunteers to assist with evacuees ranging from floods, hurricanes, and fires.

The Prosecutor added, "It is our mission to maintain a readiness for any event, including crisis counseling."

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