There are many opportunities to volunteer for community resilience work through recognised voluntary agencies. If you join one of the agencies below, you can choose to help in the response and recovery of emergencies affecting Somerset communities.
The Somerset Local Authorities Civil Contingencies Partnership is made up of Somerset County and the five District Councils. The Civil Contingencies Unit (CCU) is the hub of the Partnership based at County Hall, Taunton. The Unit promotes community resilience in communities across Somerset and is the first point of contact for local authority services required during emergencies.
The voluntary agencies below are known as the Somerset Emergency Voluntary Agencies Group (SEVAG). It is a group of approximately 20 voluntary agencies who accept volunteers, give them resilience training, make checks for working with children and vulnerable people, and take part in exercises with responding agencies. SEVAG volunteers are available for callout to help the Civil Contingencies Unit with response and recovery in emergencies across Somerset.
This group consists of the following voluntary agencies:
- British Red Cross
- Royal Voluntary Service
- Burnham Area Rescue Boat
- St John Ambulance
- Freewheelers Emergency Voluntary Service
- Wessex 4x4 Response
- Plymouth Brethren Rapid Response Team
- Civil Air Patrol (Skywatch)
- Victim Support
- Salvation Army
- Faith Communities Response Team
- Exmoor Search and Rescue
- South West England Rescue Association
- Rotary Club
- Lions Club
- Street Pastors
Each voluntary agency in the group has its own capabilities and services, and can provide care and support, welfare, transport services, animal welfare, and so on.
There are also a number of locations where SEVAG provide volunteers to help run rest centres for those evacuated from their homes.
If you have skills you would like to use in a voluntary agency or would like to help your community develop emergency plans, there is more information on our Preparing for emergencies page.