Sat | Jun 19, 2021

A passion to help - Karene Forrester gives her all, receives multiple certification

Published:Saturday | June 23, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Gareth Davis, Gleaner Writer

PORT ANTONIO, Portland:CITING THE need to assist the needy as well as other persons during times of natural disasters is the motivating factor which led Karene Forrester to join the Portland Red Cross.

Mother of three, she is now an active member of that civil society group. She has grown in her volunteer position becoming a dedicated and committed member. This has enabled her to attend several workshops and training, and she is now certified in several areas.

"This is my passion. I became a volunteer as I believe it was my civic duty to do so, and I have always had a burning desire to help people, especially the needy. Red Cross has provided me with that opportunity, and since becoming a member two years ago, I have undergone training in many areas including first aid, logistics and warehouse management, vulnerability capacity assessment training of trainers (VCAToT), and national intervention team (NIT)."

Forrester is in charge of a storeroom and supervises the receiving and distributing of supplies from the Red Cross office in Kingston. She is also certified in administering first aid.


Forrester is to undergo at least one more training session to become certified in NIT and VCAToT. This will make her eligible for deployment to another parish to provide assistance in the event of a disaster. She will also be able to assist in reducing the numbers of deaths, injuries, and impact from a disaster, and also to identify vulnerable people, places, and alternative routes.

Forrester further added: "I am a part of an emergency team ... . So far, I have assisted a young boy, who fell at school and injured his hand. I managed to bandage his arm, and shortly afterwards, he was taken to hospital. I wish that I had joined Red Cross many years ago as it offers new opportunities and experiences. I am urging the younger people to volunteer their services by joining the Red Cross as they are in need of members."