Community Assistance Team

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What is the Community Assistance Team?
Who are we?
What do we do?
How it works
Selection criteria
Submit an Expression of Interest

What is the Community Assistance Team?

The Community Assistance Team is a two-year pilot project designed to assist communities in British Columbia in increasing their resilience to disasters by providing support with disaster planning and supplementing emergency response and recovery activities.
The goal of this community-led project is to support local communities in becoming stronger and more resilient through disaster planning and by complementing existing processes through the mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery phases.

Who are we?

The Red Cross Community Assistance Team is made up of members who have a comprehensive understanding of emergency management concepts and processes coupled with diverse backgrounds in operations, planning and strategic engagement.

In addition, Red Cross Community Advisors in British Columbia have experience working at the local, regional, and provincial levels of emergency management.

What do we do?

The Community Assistance Team helps strengthen emergency management capacity in local communities.
We partner with select communities to complete emergency management-related projects that the communities themselves identify will help them strengthen their local capacity to respond to and prepare for emergencies.
This pilot project is community-led.
Communities identify their needs, priorities, and where they need support. Through collaboration with the Community Assistance Team, a community project is identified, and a plan is developed, with the guidance and expertise of the Community Assistance Team.
The Community Assistance Team is designed to complement, not duplicate, existing assessment processes and disaster planning in British Columbia.

How it works

  Step 1: Communities submit an Expression of Interest, informing the Community Assistance Team that they are interested in potentially being selected to participate in the project.
Step 2: Submissions are reviewed by the Community Assistance Team. All communities will be contacted with the results of their submission.
Step 3: The Community Assistance Team conducts an in-depth discussion with communities that meet the selection criteria. This provides an opportunity to assess the community’s needs in greater detail and for the community to share best practices from previous emergency responses and some of the challenges they face.
Step 4: Using the selection criteria, a shortlist of submissions is created. A review panel consisting of Red Cross personnel, including senior leadership, selects communities to participate in the pilot project. Agreements are signed between the selected communities and the Community Assistance Team outlining the proposed projects, roles and responsibilities, timelines, and next steps.

Selection criteria

We are looking for communities that are committed to strengthening their resilience to disasters by actively engaging in emergency preparedness initiatives.
Priority is being given to remote, rural, and Indigenous communities.
Communities are also selected based on criteria that includes:
  • Experience with repeated emergencies;
  • Having the capacity at the community level to work with the Community Assistance Team to complete the project; and
  • Community vulnerabilities, hazards, and risks.
Communities are involved in every step of the project, working collaboratively with the Community Assistance Team to complete community-identified projects which are flexible, adaptable, and tailored to their specific needs.

Projects must focus on strengthening emergency management capacity at the local level. Projects can be short-, mid-, or long-term and will last from one month to one year.

Submit an Expression of Interest

The overall goal of the Community Assistance Team is to help strengthen the capacity of communities to prepare for and respond to emergencies.
Communities that are interested in strengthening their emergency management processes are invited to submit an Expression of Interest to the Community Assistance Team.
This form is the first step in the community selection process.
If your community is selected, we are committed to collaborating with your team on strengthening capacity at the local level to respond to and prepare for emergencies.
Expressions of Interest are being accepted from February 1 - 25, 2022.  You can find the form here or email us at
Once an Expression of Interest has been received, a member of the Community Assistance Team will follow up directly with your community to review your submission and, if your community meets the criteria, to collaborate on a more in-depth assessment to identify your community’s needs and priorities.
Two to three communities will be selected to participate in this pilot project in 2022. The first selected community will be announced in May.


Email us at to connect with a member of the Community Assistance Team. This email is monitored during business hours, Monday to Friday.
Or perhaps our Frequently Asked Questions can help.

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