What is REACT Mission Statement
The mission of REACT International is to provide public safety communications to individuals, organizations, and government agencies to save lives, prevent injuries, and give assistance wherever and whenever needed. We will strive to establish a monitoring network of trained volunteer citizen-based communicators using any and all means to deliver the message.
1. To assist in any emergency by furnishing radio communications in cooperation with authorities and other volunteer organizations.
2. To practice and encourage operating excellence through skilled communications techniques.
3. To maintain equipment at peak efficiency and operate in accordance with all government regulations.
4. To advise the public on correct, effective use of CB Emergency Channel 9 as well as other forms of communication.
Teams participate in their communities' disaster preparedness plans through cooperative agreements with the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army and the National Weather Service.
In addition, REACT International is a participating member of National VOAD (Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters). Many of the State Council organizations and local Teams are also members of their State or sub-state chapters of VOAD.
The idea of using CB Radio in an organized way for emergency communications was born in a Chicago snowstorm using the CB to get help for a young family broken down on an expressway with a very sick child.
On January 23 rd, 1962, REACT's founder, Henry B Kreer, convinced Hallicrafters Company to sponsor the REACT Program. The initial requirements for a Team were three members who agreed to monitor hours for CB Emergencies and the first REACT colors were red and black. There were no dues or other requirements except to comply with federal and state regulations.
By 1964, it was determined that there was a need for a National CB Emergency Channel. REACT National Headquarters asked all REACT Teams to monitor the channel as a voluntary emergency channel; REACT was up to 800 Teams by this time.
In 1967, REACT was instrumental in a movement to convince the FCC to designate Channel 9 as the CB Emergency Channel. In 1976, REACT's first Board of Directors was started and REACT was represented at the White House Conference on CB Radio. REACT Month also began during 1976 as was it granted recognition as a fully tax exempt organization from the IRS. All teams are included under this Group Exemption. This is the first time that REACT was able to receive Tax Deductible Donations.
In 1982, at the REACT International Convention, the President's Volunteer Action Award was received. REACT also expanded into the United Kingdom during this year with the addition of more than 200 teams. In addition participation from Teams in South Africa, Australia and other places around the world were the highlight of REACT's 20 th Anniversary. Membership at this time was over 1000 Teams and 18000 Members Worldwide.
The REACT of the 21 st Century is not the same REACT of the 20 th Century. REACT has grown out of necessity to cover additional communication functions such as FRS (Family Radio Service), GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service), MURS, Amateur Radio as well as other Radio Frequencies too numerous to mention.
Many teams monitor all of the above services as well as provide communications assistance to events in their local areas. Some teams are active in CERT (Citizen Emergency Response Teams) at many levels from providing expanded communications capabilities to actually having members who are fully trained to deploy as responders to disaster areas to provide assistance on the ground to help protect lives and property after a disaster occurs.
Tampa Bay REACT was chartered as Team 6127 of REACT International in March of 2007. We are a Volunteer, Non-Profit, Tax Exempt, Charitable organization providing Community Service to Hillsborough County and the Tampa Bay Area. Our area includes at this time Hillsborough County, Pinellas County, Pasco County, Polk County, Manatee Counties and Sarasota Counties. We are a member of the Florida Council of REACT Teams.
Our vision is to strengthen our community's emergency response efforts through community partnerships.
Tampa Bay REACT is a non-profit Emergency Communications and Response organization, formed as a charitable and educational organization providing Community Service to Hillsborough County Florida and the Tampa Bay area in times of Disasters or Emergency. This Community Service is provided through the partnerships that we have forged with various Emergency Response Agencies throughout the area.
Tampa Bay REACT has formed various partnerships to assist in times of Disaster or Emergency with the following groups and agencies:
The West Central Florida Group, Inc. (NI4CE)
Tampa Amateur Radio Club (TARC)
Hillsborough County ARES/RACES
Hillsborough County Emergency Management
Christian Emergency Response Force (CERF)
Greater Tampa CERT (GT-CERT)
National Weather Service (NHS - Skywarn)
American Radio Relay League (ARRL)
American Red Cross (ARC)
The Salvation Army (SA)
National Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD)
While in the past training consisted of a knowledge and understanding of the FCC Rules and Regulations and the ability to transmit information received in the event of an emergency to the proper authorities, there has been a movement toward increased training as well as awareness since the tragic events of September 11, 2001.
Tampa Bay REACT provides most training to its members at no cost to them. All members of Tampa Bay REACT are required to complete the following training within their first 90 days of membership. All of this training is provided free to the members from various sources. Training includes the following courses:
Emergency Management Institute IS-00007, A Citizens Guide to Disaster Assistance
Emergency Management Institute IS-00100, Introduction to ICS
Emergency Management Institute IS-00200, ICS for Single Resources and Initial Action Incidents
Emergency Management Institute IS-00700, NIMS An Introduction
Traffic and Parking
Basic Radio Procedures
Tampa Bay REACT feels that members who complete these required courses are able to properly and safely assist in times of Disaster and Emergency for communications functions, as well as have a basic understanding of the Incident Command System and their role within the functions of Emergency Management.
Tampa Bay REACT also encourages all members to obtain at least Basic First Aid and CPR training after their first 90 days. Tampa Bay REACT also encourages all members to take advantage of all higher level training that is available or offered by Tampa Bay REACT or one of its partner agencies.
Mission: Our Vision
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