The SMART-CERT PROGRAM, is a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) effort by SMART College to train counselors and school children from 250 schools in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor on how to set-up emergency response teams in schools, to handle emergencies or disasters at schools. This program consists of 5 stages which will be organized over 6 months. Stage 1 of the program involves training and certifying 250 school counselors; Stage 2 involves visiting 250 schools and addressing about 20,000 students; Stage 3 involves training and certifying 1200 secondary school students from 250 schools whom will be competent to be able to set-up SMART-CERT or emergency response teams; Stage 4 is the inter-school SMART-CERT Competition; and Stage 5 is the roll-out of the 250 emergency response teams.
This SMART-CERT Program organized by SMART College, is inspired by the CERT program developed by the Los Angeles City Fire Department (LAFD) due to Whittier Narrows earthquake occurrence in 1987. The CERT program now covers 28 states in United States and is managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
The SMART-CERT Program trains school counselors and school children on disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization and disaster medical operations. Once trained and certified a SMART-CERT member will act as first responder in the event of an emergency providing initial support before professional emergency responders arrive.
The SMART-CERT Program began in 2014, when SMART College worked with 30 schools in Kuala Lumpur. As part of this program, 63 secondary school students were selected, trained and certified as SMART-CERT members to be able to set-up SMART-CERT or emergency response teams at school to handle emergency or disaster situations. In 2015, SMART College worked with 40 schools in Kuala Lumpur and Penang with the assistance of the Fire Brigade Department in Kuala Lumpur and Safety & Safety officers from the FREPENCA association based in Penang. It also launched the ‘International Children Distress Signals Campaign’ where school children were taught international recognized distress signals being practiced in other countries such as Singapore, Australia and the United States.