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Background on Citizen Corps

Citizen Corps is a component of President Bush’s USA Freedom Corps initiative that will create opportunities for individuals to volunteer and participate in community emergency preparation, prevention and response activities. Citizen Corps includes five national programs that can be used at the local level by Citizen Corps Councils. They include:

  • Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Training
  • Medical Reserve Corps
  • Neighborhood Watch
  • Operation TIPS (Terrorism Information and Prevention System)
  • Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS)
Citizen Corps was created to offer those who want to devote their energy and skills, in the aftermath of September 11, to helping their country and their communities by getting involved in activities that support emergency, crime, and natural disaster prevention, preparedness and response. Since it was launched, more than 25,000 Americans in all 50 states and territories have signed up to volunteer through Citizen Corps by calling 1-877-USA-Corps or logging on to

Citizen Corps will be coordinated at the local level by Citizen Corps Councils that will bring together local elected officials, first responders, educational institutions, medical facilities, faith-based and community organizations, and civic, business, and industry leaders. The Councils will build a web of volunteer support for first responder activities by drawing on existing programs in their communities and helping to create new opportunities.

Local government leaders from: Arlington Heights, Illinois; Charlotte, North Carolina; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Fort Wayne, Indiana; Knoxville, Tennessee; Laredo, Texas; Los Angeles, California; Orange County, California; Orlando, Florida; Placentia, California; Redondo Beach, California; Santa Fe County, New Mexico; Tucson, Arizona; and Washington, D.C. joined President Bush in Knoxville, TN today for his announcements on Citizen Corps.