Santa Barbara Fire Department Representative Visits Governor's Office

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Santa Barbara Fire Department Representative Visits Governor's Office
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Source: City of Santa Barbara

The City Fire Department’s Bilingual Outreach Coordinator, Liliana Encinas, was invited by Governor Newsome’s office in Sacramento on Wednesday July 10th to discuss best practices of emergency preparedness. The Governor’s new California for All Initiative is ushering in a new era of emergency preparedness leveraging the power of volunteerism while ensuring preparedness support and information to the “Whole Community”. This campaign is directed toward those experiencing social vulnerability factors including social isolation, poverty, language barriers, and other access and functional needs challenges. The Campaign extends the impact of volunteer and service programs designed to meet these unique and varied needs by utilizing volunteer programs.

The programs, Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and Listos educates residents on disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area providing basic training in basic disaster response skills. Listos is a grass-roots, basic emergency and disaster readiness public education program for the non-English population, targeting individuals and families. Both classes are taught in English and Spanish.

Ms. Encinas was part of a panel discussion with the State’s Univision Headquarters, a State-wide Spanish speaking media outlet, that included a representative from CalFire and the Governor’s Office. Ms. Encinas discussed emergency preparedness for the non-English speaking population. She was invited due to all the work she has done in the Spanish speaking community in disaster preparedness.

The Governor has been so impressed with the Listos Program, which was developed in Santa Barbara County. Recently, the State of California awarded $2.2 million dollars to the Fire Service Training Institute (FSTI), a Santa Barbara County non-profit, to continue the programs development. President of FSTI, Michael Williams, said that this grant will allow the Listos program to reach areas of our state that are difficult to reach.

Ms. Encinas has been intimately involved in Listos program since 2010. Listos was originally develop in 2009 as part of the Orfalea Aware and Prepare Initiative. She revised the curriculum and developed the Train-the-Trainer and Master Trainer programs in 2012. Currently there are 32 Listos programs in the State and FSTI is looking at significantly expanding the program within non-governmental, various public agencies and non-profits to develop messaging for the whole community.

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