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I finally finished my Team Rubicon training. It only took me, I don’t know, all year? There are several reasons I was procrastinating, but that hardly matters. It’s done now, and I’m finally eligible for the Team Rubicon Roll Call…and it’s perfect timing for the upcoming National Day of Service.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from the initial training. The courses initially required are all online, a fact that will likely make you cringe, especially if you’re former military. But I have to admit, I was pleasantly surprised. Based upon what I learned there and upon the conversations I’ve had with my friends who’ve been involved with TR for a while, I’m cautiously optimistic that a deployment with Team Rubicon will be not only a pleasant experience but one that reflects the sort of efficiency the military could have if it didn’t get in its own way.

Team Rubicon Training Completion

Receiving notification of successful Team Rubicon TR101 online training. It’s online, but it doesn’t make you want to gouge your eyes out with a fork, either. This isn’t death by Power Point. Anyway, you gotta get it if you want to deployable.

Team Rubicon Roll Call

To be eligible for the Team Rubicon Roll Call, which is to say cleared hot for “mobilization and deployment”, you have to complete a background check, complete TR101 (the aforementioned training cycle), and fill out the roll call profile. If your experience goes like mine, you’ll quickly receive comms from TR folks in your local area welcoming you aboard and beginning what is essentially a friendly, defacto welcome process.

Once you’re logged in and ready to go, you’ll begin to receive notice of operations. This may be as “simple” (though extremely significant) as answering the call for people to help clear debris caused by a natural disaster, i.e. hurricanes, floods, and — particularly significant where I’m from — tornadoes. However, it could also be as specialized or niche as a request for medical professionals or some other specific skill set.

This is why TR asks you if you have any specific qualifications or training when you build your profile. Experienced truck driver? Are you an electrician? Good at operating a backhoe? As you might expect, they have a need for a wide range of backgrounds and skills.

Happily, you don’t have to have any specific skillsets. They just need you to show up. You need the desire to help people who may be experiencing the worst day of their lives, a willingness to work your ass off, and a good attitude. That’s pretty good news for me. I don’t have a background that lends itself particularly well to anything that might be needed during a disaster recovery operation, but I can push a broom, shovel, or shop-vac with the best of ’em.

Note the wording: serve this community. 

Here’s an example of a call to action, and one that’s key to recent world events.

A deployment opportunity to support displaced Afghans via TR's roll call.

Supporting displaced Afghans with Team Rubicon

Supporting displaced Afghans with TR


As you can see, it’s a pretty thorough WARNORD. Most of their operations are of what you might describe as “traditional domestic disaster relief”, which now that I read it sounds like a terrible phrase but is accurate. As of right now, there are TR elements running operations after Hurricane Ida, the floods in Tennessee, locations that are processing displaced Afghans, and many others (including OCONUS, like Haiti).

Here are some more examples.

TR responding to Hurricane Ida

Team Rubicon responding to Hurricane Ida

Team Rubicon responding to Hurricane Ida

Bottom line, if you can’t find a place where you can help out and serve you’re just not trying.  If you’re physically incapable of doing some or all of this stuff, there are other ways to help using your brain housing group.

And of course, you can always make a donation.

More to follow on this. I hope this provides at least some impetus for someone to help out. It’s easy to post images and “pray for” messages on social media. Not quite so simple to actually lend a hand in some way.

Roger up to the roll call.