City of Vernon ESS Program

Vernon Emergency Support Services (ESS) is currently recruiting people who are interested in volunteering with the team. There are many roles available, some of which require a successful police information check (pic) to safeguard the well-being of evacuees.

In general we are looking for volunteers 19 years of age or older with:


  • A concern for those affected by disaster
  • Willingness to participate in training
  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to respond on short notice
  • Desire to work as a team

As a Vernon ESS volunteer you would be helping members of your community displaced by house fires, floods or other disasters.

Please read "About Us" to gain a greater understanding about ESS.  We look forward to your application.  

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Vernon Needs Volunteers

About Us

Vernon Emergency Support Services is comprised of a group of dedicated and civic minded people who volunteer their time to work with the City and assist people evacuated from their homes due to fire, flood, landslide, and other emergencies.


Around the Province there are hundreds of similar local volunteer groups working to deliver a provincially resourced array of services and resources to evacuees. These services, offered for a period of time directly following an evacuation order, may include food, lodging, clothing, emotional support, information about the disaster, and family reunification. 


What is it that Emergency Support Service (ESS) Volunteers Do?


  • Mobilize with other ESS responders, to meet evacuees, usually at a Reception Center, to provide them with ESS supports.
  • Interview and register evacuees to identify their ESS service requirements.
  • Provide emotional support, care and information to evacuees and their families.
  • Complete documentation required to provide evacuees with access to the food, shelter and other ESS supports available to them.
  • Connect with suppliers and other service providers to determine availability of ESS resources at the time of the disaster.
  • Manage information to enable reunification of family members separated by the disaster.
  • Track financial and statistical information on ESS response.
  • Report on ESS to the City’s Emergency Program.


  • Connect with community recovery resources on resources available after the disaster.
  • Help evacuees transition to next steps after the disaster.


  • Engage local suppliers of food, accommodation, and clothing to participate in this program and accept ESS referral forms, which when submitted with invoice to the Province, will be reimbursed for the ESS services rendered.
  • Engage and plan with other local and provincial support organizations, emergency responders and, non-government disaster agencies.
  • Prearrange for facilities that can be converted to deliver ESS services. The two main facility uses are reception centers, where evacuees are directed to go to register and learn about services available and group lodging facilities, which are alternative shelter options for large scale emergencies.
  • Provide emergency preparedness education to the public and community organizations.
  • Promote ESS volunteer services and opportunities.

How is ESS response structured? 

Level 1: A small localized event such as a fire affecting one or two households; usually less than 12 people. 

Level 2: A significant event affecting more than 12 people, such as an apartment fire. A reception centre is established – usually for a short duration. 

Level 3: A major emergency, such as large scale flooding or interface wild fires, involving a large scale evacuation. More than one reception centre may be established. Duration of operation may last days or weeks.