Delaware to Receive Federal Funds to Train Seniors in Homeland Defense Preparedness

WASHINGTON, DC – Thanks to a $20,000 federal grant, 63 retired Delawareans will become part of a specially trained team of volunteers, dispatched statewide to educate the public and first responders about disaster preparedness, Delaware’s Congressional announced today. As part of the program, Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) will train and certify individuals identified by the New Castle County Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) to present family disaster preparedness workshops to children and adults throughout the state. RSVP volunteers with backgrounds in chemistry will conduct statewide workshops in “Basic Chemistry” for firefighters and other emergency responders to increase their knowledge and skills in handling hazardous waste. “Right now, there are thousands of seniors in Delaware with a wealth of technical and scientific knowledge – knowledge that once tapped could be extremely useful to our state as we prepare against any potential terrorist threat,” said Sen. Biden. “Our firefighters and emergency responders are well trained and extremely capable, and I am certain they would welcome any information to further help them protect themselves and our residents.” “This is the generation that survived the Great Depression, won World War II and led America through the Cold War. They are well prepared and able to tackle this new challenge, protecting our homeland security,” Sen. Carper said. “Our state’s small size and close-knit communities enable us to tap into existing resources that might otherwise be overlooked.” “Delaware seniors are ready and willing to help protect our state and nation from terrorist attacks. Their years of field experience and the advice they have to offer will help our first responders increase their knowledge and further their training, especially in the areas of chemistry and biology. This is a unique program that draws upon community resources for community protection and I applaud all seniors who are willing to give their time to this very worthy cause,” said Rep. Mike Castle.