The Mission Volunteer Team Leader training teaches you how to create and lead small groups of volunteers, create hands-on ministry projects, facilitate a powerful spiritual journey and host team projects that transform individuals and make a difference. Leader training covers all aspects of identifying, planning, and completing a mission project.  The one day class is led by trained staff and covers such topics as project logistics, team safety, administrative forms, fundraising, group travel, spiritual leadership, and volunteer recruiting. The training cost of $30 per person, secures your spot and includes an UMVIM Team Leader Manual, and snacks and drinks.








EARLY RESPONSE TRAINING: Basic & Team Leader ERT Classes

The Mission of an Early Response Team (ERT) is to provide a caring Christian presence in the aftermath of a disaster.

The team is not a “first response” group, nor is it a recovery, rebuild, or repair team. It is assigned various tasks, usually relating to safety, mitigation of further damage to property, and cleanup tasks to assist the homeowner in preparation for rebuild. Always being the Caring Presence!

ERT Certification requires successful completion of the Basic ERT course AND completion of the Safe Gatherings process. (We work with vulnerable individuals.) Both ERT and Safe Gatherings are valid for three years. ERT Classes are taught by UMCOR certified instructors. The class is a FULL day – includes class time, team building, and hands-on experiences to hone skills. Your work clothing is the uniform of the day. Join this group of trained individuals extending the hands and feet of Christ to those in need.

The Early Response Team training class cost of $35 per person includes: training manual, ID badge, T-shirt, lunch, and morning snacks. There is an additional $41 cost for Safe Gatherings online background check and Safe Sanctuaries training .




The Introduction to Church Disaster Planning provides an opportunity for church members to learn the basic steps to prepare a church disaster plan. The class prepares you for the more extensive two day follow up class at your church, the UMCOR Connecting Neighbors Program. Learn how to lead your church through the process in creating the actual plan to preserve your church in a disaster. Be part of the solution and not part of the problem. Put your church in charge of your own response.


This is a Connecting Neighbors Training designed to teach conference representatives how to help local churches develop a disaster ministry. Churches can better provide a caring Christian response to local disasters if they have prepared their church families and facility before disaster occurs. Connecting Neighbors addresses the faith community's responsibility in disaster readiness and response and suggests tools to meet individual and community needs. In this training you will be taught how to present the Connecting Neighbors program, how to connect the church to outside resources and to the community’s emergency plans; where the church fits in and how the church can help the community at large.


Children's Disaster Services and its trained and certified volunteers provide care for children and families following disasters. The 27-hour overnight workshops provide required training for volunteers who wish to serve in the program. Anyone 18 or over is welcome to attend this 2-day training (27 hours) and become a certified CDS caregiver. References and background checks are also required for certification. Once caregivers complete certification, all expenses are paid for disaster responses.

The training is an overnight experience, simulating a shelter situation, and includes an overview of our work, understanding phases of disaster and how we fit in, working with disaster partners, children and family needs following disaster, supporting resilience in children,  setting up a children's center with a Kit of Comfort, ethical guidelines, and the certification process.

Registration can be found online at our website. If you or others have questions about these training events, please email or call Kathleen Fry-Miller at 260-704-1443. Let me know if you would like to have brochures, fliers, or any other materials to share about our program and workshops.


Volunteers play a critical role in any disaster recovery effort. The local church and community can provide hospitality and meaningful service by hosting volunteers in disaster response and recovery efforts. Participants learn how to manage volunteers so those volunteers can contribute effectively and find great personal rewards through their work. This workshop will help prepare you for providing volunteer housing, food, transportation, recreation, and affirmation.



Open hearts. Open minds. Open doors.