FOR 2021 NEW VOLUNTEERS:
We'll be training via Zoom.
It is with deep regret that due to the Covid-19 pandemic we are forced to cancel all in-person classes for the near future. We still want to meet virtually and get you involved with NVADG. As we do not want to stop training all together, we will be offering live virtual classes. As the husband of a High School teacher who has been teaching virtually for the last eight months, I realize that this is not ideal. In-person training is more realistic, easier to comprehend, and frankly, more fun. But this is the reality that we must face, and so we are going to improvise, adapt and overcome!
The originally-scheduled Annual Training for New Volunteers, scheduled for January 16-17, will be shortened to six hours of virtual training on January 16th starting at 0900. (You will be sent a Zoom link soon.) After that initial training, if you like what you see and wish to continue, then you will be instructed how to contact Butte County Animal Control to get officially certified. You can make an appointment to get your photo taken for your ID badge and get sworn in as a Butte County Disaster Service Worker. You will also have to apply for a Livescan. This will all be explained during the training on the 16th.
We fully understand that this is not as a complete training as the usual full 16-hour in-person weekend. We don’t want to abandon our new volunteers and throw you to the wolves at your first deployment. So, new 2021 Volunteers will be issued a special ID badge so that you can readily be identified. That way an experienced volunteer can mentor you during your first incident – to provide both on-the-job learning and experience. You are still strongly encouraged to take the in-person training in January 2022, or whenever we are allowed to safely have large gatherings again. At that time, your temporary identification badge will be replaced with our standard ID.
We all know that six hours of virtual training is not enough. We intend to supplement that training with monthly virtual live classes. The intention is to have these classes recorded and available for viewing on our website. We are currently revamping our website, and will be able to feature those training videos.
On January 23rd at 0900, we will be offering the Annual Refresher for Returning Volunteers – again virtually. Every new (and old) volunteer is invited, and encouraged, to attend. We hope to keep the training under three hours. We will be reviewing some of the items that were mentioned during the North Complex Debrief, but the majority of our time together will be spent introducing our new disaster-management software, Shelterly. We are currently in beta testing, but will be ready to introduce the Hotline, Dispatch and Intake modules. It is pretty exciting stuff, so we hope that you will join us.
The other thing that we are working on is developing more professional training videos. Our YouTube site is fine, but our goal is to create professional-quality videos. Thanks to your suggestions, we have found some excellent people to work with in this regard. These videos will be “short and to the point” instructional videos. If you have some suggestions about a topic that you would like to see covered, please let us know. Here are some of the ideas that have been suggested:
- How to get a dog/cat in and out of a kennel/crate safely
- How to safely walk a dog
- Small and large animal behavior cues
- Virtual tour of the small and large animal shelter
- Small Animal First Aid
This past year has been both challenging and historic. We greatly appreciate your patience and understanding as we work through the remainder of the Covid-19 crisis, and help prepare NVADG for the next season of potential disasters. I appreciate each and every one of you for your dedication and willingness to help when called upon. Let’s do our best this year to train and be prepared for that next disaster.
Looking forward to “seeing” you on January 16th!