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Published 22nd May 2020, 12:55pm

The Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) is partnering with Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI) to hold shelter management training for the 2020 hurricane season on Wednesday, 27 May. There is a special need for volunteers to support the eastern districts shelters.

Volunteers will hear presentations and ask questions on how to:

• manage a shelter

• monitor sheltered persons, and

• provide shelter updates.

Given the present situation, the training and mitigation measures planned are being influenced by the COVID-19 outbreak, HMCI Director Danielle Coleman confirms.

“This year’s hurricane season brings a few more challenges than previous years. Issues such as social distancing in shelters, procuring masks and additional supplies, considering contingency plans if communication is impacted are some of the things that we are currently planning for.”

“DCFS and HMCI work closely together to train our shelter management teams so that they are ready to activate at very short notice for all emergencies. Whilst this year’s training will be held remotely using Zoom, we have no doubt that with the additional COVID-19 requirements, it will prove to be an interesting one,” she adds.

In reinforcing HMCI’s assessment of joint shelter volunteer management training and response mapping, DCFS Director Paulinda Mendoza-Williams says: “We are prepared for the forthcoming hurricane season having evaluated and mitigated for conceivable scenarios.”

“Mindful of how COVID-19 has already changed daily life, DCFS and HMCI are taking all necessary and additional precautionary measures to adhere to existing guidance and protocols relating to the ongoing outbreak when reviewing shelter staffing and management.”

For more details and to sign up for next week’s Zoom training for shelter volunteers, please email Tina.Ebanks@gov.ky or Melissa.Hall@dcfs.gov.ky , no later than 11am on Tuesday, 26 May.