New York State preparedness safety kit.
New York State preparedness safety kit.

New York State Saturday officially launched a $5 million citizen training program they believe will help better prepare residents during emergencies and disasters like Superstorm Sandy.

Officials said 600 people signed up for Saturday’s first Citizen Preparedness Corps Training Program at Farmingdale State College, which was attended by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who unveiled the program during a speech with Vice President Joe Biden by his side last month.

The program will provide citizens with the tools and resources they need to prepare for emergencies and recover as quickly as possible, officials said.

The training program, led by the New York National Guard, will be funded by the $60 billion the federal government appropriated for the state after Sandy.

“We want our state’s citizens to be the most prepared in the nation for natural disasters as we continue to reimagine New York for a new reality,” Cuomo said.

The state hopes to train 100,000 people to “be their own first responder in their communities,” Cuomo added.

Officials also launched a website,, where residents can sign up for training.

Saturday’s participants also received a free starter kit, which includes a first aid kit, water, gloves, a flashlight, emergency blanket, and other items.

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Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: [email protected] Twitter: rashedmian