VITEMA, this month, welcomed sixty students from the Ricardo Richards Elementary School to its St. Croix facility to learn about how the Agency prepares for and responds to emergencies.
Students toured the VITEMA’s Christiansted facility including its Emergency Operations Center (EOC), which serves as the hub for emergency response coordination, as well as key offices, the Communications Room and the Director’s Office.
The Ricardo Richards students also received a demonstration of the video-teleconference between the St. Croix and St. Thomas EOCs, on how to build an emergency supply go-kit with items found in the home and on how VITEMA communicates with first responders using handheld radio. Students were also able to speak with Director Barnes about her role as the lead emergency manager for the Territory and about the types of hazards that may impact the Virgin Islands.
The group also explored VITEMA’s communications vehicle and the Community Emergency Response Team emergency response trailer.
“We thoroughly enjoyed hosting the Ricardo Richards students,” said VITEMA Director Mona Barnes. “Many of them had insightful questions about how to be prepared for storms and even tsunamis. They also asked a lot of questions about the work VITEMA does.”
Barnes added that Virgin Islands youth are among VITEMA’s key audiences and that many of them want to be part of process of preparedness and recovery.
“I encourage them to keep asking questions and to play a part in making sure their families are always prepared,” Barnes said.
Here are some photos
from the visit: