Early Response Training (ERT) Class

A Basic Early Response Training Class has been scheduled on Sat. March 7, 2015.  The class will take place at St. Paul United Methodist Church 301 N. Cambridge St. Ninety Six, SC 29666 in the Fellowship Hall.  It is located directly across from the Piggly Wiggly. The class begins at 9 AM and will end around 5 PM.  Re-certification will run from 9 AM to 1 PM. You may park in front of the church along the road or in the back of the church.

The church will provide light snacks for break times but lunch is on your own.  There are many restaurant options in Ninety Six including Mexican, Chinese, Subs, Hamburgers and more.

There is a $35.00 fee for the class.  Re-certification is $10.00.  Payment is due the day of the class. A criminal background check is required through the conference and you are responsible for taking care of that. You may contact your local church to inquire about the criminal background check.  Cost is around $16.00.  Successful completion of this course and criminal background check are required in order to serve on the Early Response Team.

An Early Response Team (ERT) is a self-contained team that enters a disaster zone at the invitation of local emergency management officials soon after disaster strikes. ERT’s provide emergency repairs and/or assistance to help people be safe, sanitary, and secure until insurance and other help are available. Work consists of clean-up and tasks required to stop further damage being done.  Examples are putting tarps on damaged roofs.  Minor repairs might be done to help make homes habitable, but not extensive repairs or reconstruction (that is the job for Long Term Recovery).

All ERT members are required to complete the training course and a criminal background check.  The training is done according to UMCOR guidelines and polices.  Persons completing the training and passing the criminal background check will be issued a badge indicating they are approved by the South Carolina Conference and credentialed by UMCOR.    Credentials are valid for three years. At that time a team member must be re-certified.

Team members are financially responsible for their travel and other expenses.

The class on March 7th will cover the purpose of an Early Response Team:

  • To show that the church cares about what has happened to the people.
  • To provide people an outlet for sharing their disaster related needs.
  • To assist the most vulnerable populations with their immediate needs.
  • To provide assistance that will help to prevent further damage to homes and property.

The class will also cover team member responsibilities, how to equip a team, how to prevent further damage (the four basic jobs), and more.

  • Tarping
  • Tools/Equipment Set-up
  • Team member safety

The class will begin at 9:00 a.m. For those persons seeking re-certification, the class will end at 1:00 p.m. For those persons taking the class for the first time, the class will end at 4:00 p.m.

If you are interested in attending this class, please send an email to STPAULERT@yahoo.com no later than February 22.


Drive Through Imposition of Ashes

Trinity Church, an auxiliary campus of Brentwood Church in Nashville, TN, selected an obvious location with ease of access to offer a “drive through imposition of ashes.” Coffee was served to all who stopped to participate. The article, Drive Thru Ashes, by Mack Strange outlines what the church did and how this drive-through outreach was received by those who chose to stop and participate.

Click here to read the article: Drive Thru Ashespublished in the January 21 issue of Leading Ideas by the Lewis Center for Church Leadership.

We invite your comments on this article and on the idea of “drive thru” ministry.

Pastor and Church Profiles

Pastors are reminded that their personal profiles as well as the profiles of their church(es) should have been completed by December 31, 2014. If you have not completed these profiles, please do so immediately.

If you need assistance, directions for accessing these profiles can be found in the 2014-2015 Greenwood District Directory on pages 36-37. For further assistance, you may contact Martha or come by the District Office and use the workstation set up for technical assistance.

For questions or additional information, please contact the District Office.

Tables I, II, and III are due by February 9, 2015

All local church annual statistical reports are due to be completed by February 9, 2015. All data will be entered into a local church’s record via EZRA.

Directions are accessing EZRA and logging into a church’s account are included in the 2015 Greenwood District Directory on page 38.

If any pastor or lay person entering his/her church’s data needs assistance, please contact the district office by phone or email. During regular business hours, anyone may come to the district office and use the workstation set up for assistance. Martha will be glad to provide assistance in logging in and entering a church’s data.