Volunteer fire departments throughout New York State will be hosting recruitment open houses throughout the weekend of April 9th and 10th as part of the kick-off of National Volunteer Week in the first-of-its-kind statewide unified recruitment effort called Recruit NY. The program will be an opportunity to highlight the duties and rewards that come with being a volunteer firefighter, and help raise public awareness about the need for volunteers. Those interested in attending the recruitment open house in their community can check with their local fire department for the specific date and times.
Over the last several years, it has been very tough for many fire departments throughout New York State to recruit and retain volunteers for a variety of reasons. The hope is that a collaborative effort among volunteer fire departments statewide will turn the declining number of volunteer firefighters around.
“While some individual departments or counties have run successful recruitment programs in recent years, for the most part, our statewide numbers have been trending in the wrong direction for awhile,” said Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) President David Jacobowitz. “The volunteer fire service needs to bolster its emergency responder numbers, so it can continue to provide the optimum level of protection for the residents of New York -- and at a tremendous savings to the local taxpayer.”
Recruit NY is an opportunity for volunteer fire departments to educate and draw in more members.
Your fire department’s active participation is crucial to the future well-being of the New York State volunteer fire service. Please get involved.
To help facilitate this recruitment initiative, FASNY has created this website, where fire departments can find a complete guide with resources to help them promote and host their own recruitment open house.
The website features easily downloadable supporting materials for volunteer fire departments to use, including press releases, posters, tips for dealing with the media and handy checklists to refer to in preparation for and during the event.
During each volunteer fire department’s Recruit NY day, firefighters can conduct tours of the station and firefighter apparatus, allow visitors to try on turnout gear, and provide fire prevention education programs and other activities throughout the firehouse for visitors to participate in. The fire department will discuss the requirements to be a volunteer, as well as conduct demonstrations, answer questions, and let visitors know how to get involved in the fire department.
The Firemen’s Association of the State of New York worked in conjunction with the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs, Association of Fire Districts of New York State, Volunteer Fire Police Association of the State of New York, and County Fire Coordinators Association of the State of New York to make this program possible.
PROVIDED / 1st Responder Newspaper