North Georgia ERTs Grow in Number


Photo: Mount Pisgah UMC ERTs at work recently in the South Georgia Conference. 

With a class of 34 newly trained UMCOR Early Response Team members, the North Georgia Conference grows its number of badged ERTs to 108. 

ERTs fill a specific need in the days soon after a natural disaster. ERTs remove debris, clean out flood-damaged homes, listen to survivors and otherwise help to prevent further property damage while providing a caring Christian presence. ERT volunteers are different from general volunteers because they are trained, have security background checks and are entirely self-sufficient. 

North Georgia has received recent requests for ERTs in Texas, Florida, South Georgia, and North Georgia and our teams have already responded to the call! 

In addition, Jim Lakin of Mount Pisgah UMC has been asked to assist with ERT training in Florida as they so desperately need more trained ERTs. It is reported that Florida has 750 miles of devastation from Irma. 

 Another large class of North Georgia United Methodists will be trained in October. Both an UMCOR Early Response Team (ERT) Training and Care Team Training will be held Saturday, October 14, at Roswell UMC led by Rev. Thom Shores and Rev. Chip Wilson. The ERT class will run from 8:30 am to 4 pm with a break for lunch. Care Team will run from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm. Anyone needing recertification-only needs to attend from 8:30 to noon. Cost for ERT first-time or recertification is $10 (pay onsite by cash or check) for the background check. There is no cost for Care Team Training. Register at

Often after an initial call for badged ERT members, mission teams of all skill levels are needed. There is enough need that every church in the North Georgia Conference could send a mission team to help our neighbors over the next few years. Whether called to the specific ministry of Early Response Team members or called to show love to our neighbors, there is room for all of the North Georgia Conference to respond.