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Yep! It's this easy!

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  • Yep! It's this easy!

    I have been an advocate for fire departments to get involved in their community. Here is a GREAT article of what I have been talking about. It's not about elaborate, labor intensive, costly, programs. It's simply getting involved, getting face to face, and having discussions. Getting to know them and they getting to know you and your department. I believe the fire department is the cornerstone of every community on which amazing things can be built.

    Calif. Firefighter Bring Christmas Joy to Families
    http://www.firehouse.com/news/121527...n=CPS151219004

    Merry Christmas everyone! Lets make 2016 count!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Daniel Byrne View Post
    I have been an advocate for fire departments to get involved in their community. Here is a GREAT article of what I have been talking about. It's not about elaborate, labor intensive, costly, programs. It's simply getting involved, getting face to face, and having discussions. Getting to know them and they getting to know you and your department. I believe the fire department is the cornerstone of every community on which amazing things can be built.

    Calif. Firefighter Bring Christmas Joy to Families
    http://www.firehouse.com/news/121527...n=CPS151219004

    Merry Christmas everyone! Lets make 2016 count!
    In this area, that need is met primarily by the local churches. My church alone collected toys an food for 90 famalies, and the church across the street did the same for 200 famalies plus. Also, the Sheriff's Office ks very involved with those types of programs as they have a very large auxiliary volunteer arm.

    I understand your desire to see the fire department in the community, but with admin, training, prevention and response expectations, I simply don't see that as feasible, unless they are volunteer with a large auxiliary component.
    Train to fight the fires you fight.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
      I understand your desire to see the fire department in the community, but with admin, training, prevention and response expectations, I simply don't see that as feasible, unless they are volunteer with a large auxiliary component.
      Very feasible. Doesn't have to be a big drive! A fire station simply adopting a family. A four person engine company, two person, whatever... each buy a gift for a child. Host the family to a station dinner. This is not feasible?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Daniel Byrne View Post
        Very feasible. Doesn't have to be a big drive! A fire station simply adopting a family. A four person engine company, two person, whatever... each buy a gift for a child. Host the family to a station dinner. This is not feasible?
        I have no problems with something like this, though I really don't see it as the role of the fire department. It's more of a feel good thing and if a crew, station or department has the time and resources for it ...... have at it.

        Again, it's something that the churches and the Sheriff's Office Posee and Auxiliary deal with. It is far more within their mission. Do I see the fire department helping out with a support role if the time's available? Sure, but it's not something I see a need for us to embrace.

        When I think of community outreach it's far more dedicated to our basic mission. so for me it's fire and life safety prevention and education oriented. That's what we are geared to do.
        Train to fight the fires you fight.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
          When I think of community outreach it's far more dedicated to our basic mission. so for me it's fire and life safety prevention and education oriented. That's what we are geared to do.
          Just as much fire prevention, and CRR, can be done over a dinner table with a family in a one on one talk, than official presentations. Events like these sure are "feel good" things in of themselves, but events like this is what develops rapport with the community, develops relationships with the community, and opens up communication. Do we know that the family having dinner at the station is not the family about to have a fire or a LODD suppressing their fire? If they are in need of hosting then chances are they are low income, and statistics show these families, and their neighbors, are most at risk.

          Fire departments shouldn't be approaching fire prevention with JUST the official programs and presentations, but be involved with their community every chance they get - and as resources and time allows.

          Who would you be more receptive to getting information from, a stranger in uniform, or a friend who took the time to help their community/family when it didn't benefit them or on their terms. It's about personal relationships as well. Sure fire prevention can be successful without it, but by getting involved in a manner the community sees as important and showing a vested interest in the community and THEIR problems will open doors and make our messages more receptive, and will enhance the ability of fire departments to influence the attitudes and behaviors needed.

          As stated previously I am not arguing or "pushing my agenda." This is based on personal experience. Having approached fire prevention in this manner is what lead to our 60% reduction in fires in 7 years. By our joining forces with church groups and police depts who went into low income neighborhoods to do cookouts and other community events, allowed us to develop personal relationships with the community that got us invited back and doors opened and receptive to our messages.

          It's about relationships.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Daniel Byrne View Post
            Just as much fire prevention, and CRR, can be done over a dinner table with a family in a one on one talk, than official presentations. Events like these sure are "feel good" things in of themselves, but events like this is what develops rapport with the community, develops relationships with the community, and opens up communication. Do we know that the family having dinner at the station is not the family about to have a fire or a LODD suppressing their fire? If they are in need of hosting then chances are they are low income, and statistics show these families, and their neighbors, are most at risk.

            Fire departments shouldn't be approaching fire prevention with JUST the official programs and presentations, but be involved with their community every chance they get - and as resources and time allows.

            Who would you be more receptive to getting information from, a stranger in uniform, or a friend who took the time to help their community/family when it didn't benefit them or on their terms. It's about personal relationships as well. Sure fire prevention can be successful without it, but by getting involved in a manner the community sees as important and showing a vested interest in the community and THEIR problems will open doors and make our messages more receptive, and will enhance the ability of fire departments to influence the attitudes and behaviors needed.

            As stated previously I am not arguing or "pushing my agenda." This is based on personal experience. Having approached fire prevention in this manner is what lead to our 60% reduction in fires in 7 years. By our joining forces with church groups and police depts who went into low income neighborhoods to do cookouts and other community events, allowed us to develop personal relationships with the community that got us invited back and doors opened and receptive to our messages.

            It's about relationships.
            Fully understand where you are headed, but I disagree that we need to become almost a social service agency. If a department, station or shift wants to help out in that way, I have no issues, but I don't think we need to go that far to build relationships.

            That being said, at times we are. Just the other day, on an EMS call we feed the patients cats and dogs, made sure they got outside to pee and cooked her some soup before we left. I'll be back tomorrow to install a smoke detector or two.

            Now, if you want the company to hang out a t the Little league field, or show up for a block party and hand out flyers, or just be there to interact and answer questions, I'm all in. That is the kind of stuff that we need to be doing as it costs nothing and doesn't take the rig out of service.

            I think we are on the same page. It's just that your page has smaller print than mine.
            Train to fight the fires you fight.

            Comment


            • #7
              I would agree 100% and we are almost completely on the same page. I just think the needs to be more of a fire service mentality, and I believe it is for many who want to help, but lack the knowledge or know how to do it - thus the forums.

              I do not think we need to become a social service at all!!! There are limits, BUT, we need to broaden our thinking along those lines. In the end it's not about who we want to be, or what we think is important, or the services we want to provide, but what the public wants and expects. THIS is where I believe we are missing the boat.

              We are not a social service but an emergency agency; however, these worlds do meet and that is where we need to start to be IF we want to be at the top of the budget sheets.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm not looking to get into yet another debate but I feel I have to respond.

                Before I go further, I have to wonder if you are correct in what you believe the public expects from the FD. Not just in your neck of the woods but on a national basis (if there is such a thing). Your beliefs of what the FD should be and what it should do may not be the same as the general public's beliefs. I think you need to acknowledge that.

                I'm employed by the FDNY. There are very rigid rules and policies in place to dictate what units do, where they do it and when they do it. Do we engage the public during building inspection periods? Yes. Do we engage the public during routine responses? Yes. Do we engage the public during public events that we are assigned to (which is fairly seldom)? Yes. Why is that fairly seldom? Because it is a busy urban department with thousands of residents/workers/visitors per square mile. Responses are up drastically. The average unit will likely approach five thousand responses when last years numbers are totaled. Throw in maintenance of quarters, apparatus and equipment. Throw in building inspections which are never ending considering the density of this city. How are we going to develop relationships with all these people? We're not. We have an interaction and it's over.
                I'm about to start my 30th year of this stuff. All here in the FDNY. I think I know what the public expects from us. They expect us to respond quickly and mitigate whatever emergency (or perceived emergency) they have. Then they expect us to go away unless or until they need us again. There are numerous agencies with huge budgets that take care of a host of issues for people here. There is no expectation of us branching out. Nor is there a desire on our part to do so. We are doing quite enough as it is. I am referring to firefighters in field units. There are some special units out of headquarters that do more public relations, education and interaction. Relatively small number of individuals compared to the total number of employees.
                I say this because it appears that you are chastising firefighters for not doing more. If so, it is unfair. Any firefighter who works in the urban setting will likely have a similar stance.

                While I work in the city, I live outside the city in a suburban area. The department in my hometown serves about 40,000 residents. Plus numerous businesses. It is all volunteer. These volunteers have families, jobs, childcare issues, working wives, etc. Plus they're aging and the youth are leaving. How much can we ask of them? On top of their time responding, training and maintaining quarters, apparatus and equipment? The county I live in has a higher population than about ten states. And that's in an area of about 280 square miles. And it is ALL volunteer (well 99% is).
                Again, I say it's unfair to tell them they have to do more. And again I say the public here doesn't seem to be clamoring for more.

                There could be huge differences in lifestyle and there could be huge differences based on geographical location. North, south, east, west. Urban, suburban, small town, rural. Paid, combo, all volunteer. What I'm saying is that you appear to be painting with a broad brush and making assumptions that may only apply to certain departments. I think this also needs to be acknowledged.

                Comment


                • #9
                  captnjak. Where have I chastised firefighters? I post an idea based upon personal knowledge and experience, someone posts an objection, I post a possible solution. With one exception where I admit his post was not helpful (bones), I do not believe anyone has been chastised. In fact I have been pretty beat up here in these forums and try to stay positive and upbeat. Just because I offer a counter point and do not share your belief doesn't mean someone is being chastised.

                  I have said time and again it may or may not apply. If it doesn't apply simply ignore it. But if you insist on trying to tell me I am wrong, when I know I am not based upon my experience and knowledge, and I state my views, that is not being chastised. That is a debate. If someone is feeling chastised or attacked that is their opinion and I am sorry for that. But these forums are about discussions, exchange of ideas, and debates.

                  I have a very nontraditional and unpopular message. I will continue to try and share what my department was able to accomplish in the area of fire prevention. Of what I have learned through my time at the NFA and presenting at several state conferences and meeting firefighters across this nation. Of what I have learned at national symposiums with international speakers. Of working with other fire departments from other countries.

                  What I have learned and experienced - to benefit others who want to TRY and make a difference and what to TRY and do different and positive things.

                  That is what this forum is for. Happy to debate. Enjoy the debate. Will continue to debate. But I am not chastising anyone.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Daniel Byrne View Post
                    captnjak. Where have I chastised firefighters? I post an idea based upon personal knowledge and experience, someone posts an objection, I post a possible solution. With one exception where I admit his post was not helpful (bones), I do not believe anyone has been chastised. In fact I have been pretty beat up here in these forums and try to stay positive and upbeat. Just because I offer a counter point and do not share your belief doesn't mean someone is being chastised.

                    I have said time and again it may or may not apply. If it doesn't apply simply ignore it. But if you insist on trying to tell me I am wrong, when I know I am not based upon my experience and knowledge, and I state my views, that is not being chastised. That is a debate. If someone is feeling chastised or attacked that is their opinion and I am sorry for that. But these forums are about discussions, exchange of ideas, and debates.

                    I have a very nontraditional and unpopular message. I will continue to try and share what my department was able to accomplish in the area of fire prevention. Of what I have learned through my time at the NFA and presenting at several state conferences and meeting firefighters across this nation. Of what I have learned at national symposiums with international speakers. Of working with other fire departments from other countries.

                    What I have learned and experienced - to benefit others who want to TRY and make a difference and what to TRY and do different and positive things.

                    That is what this forum is for. Happy to debate. Enjoy the debate. Will continue to debate. But I am not chastising anyone.
                    It has been my impression at times that you've been slightly preachy. Probably not your intent. Just saying. And I'm not particularly thin-skinned when it comes to criticism, perceived or otherwise. Take it for what it's worth. Others may agree or disagree. Maybe they'll post.

                    You started by saying it may or may not apply and we should ignore it if it does not. But then you talk about aiming your message at those who are willing to TRY. As if a lack of success is based on a failure to try. My point is trying may not be enough, based on factors I've already explained.

                    I'm pretty sure I've said this before, but I'll say again that I'm a fan of your efforts, your message and your department's successes in this area.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Without a doubt. Preachy. Yep. Guilty. No doubt. Trying my best to encourage and to challenge, and can't do that by admitting defeat with every obstacle. I don't know everyone's situation so the best I can do is to continue to offer suggestions and allow those on the other end to either try it, apply it, or disregard it.

                      12 years as an active duty Marine and another 15 in the guard, and maybe that NCO comes out as well. But please do not ever take my posts as chastising, belittling, or pushing an agenda. There may be a time I do that because there are those on forums who use this as a means to lash out and spread their negativity. Misery loves company and I personally distain those people. But I will make sure I clarify.

                      Thanks for your support captnjak and I hope you know it’s reciprocal.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Not questioning your intentions , but you do come across similar to a reformed ------- fill in the blank. Enthusiasm is great , but what works in point A may not work in point B. Regardless of the importance of prevention and community involvement --if it takes away from your ability to safely do your core mission, its not always a good thing.
                        ?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by slackjawedyokel View Post
                          Not questioning your intentions , but you do come across similar to a reformed ------- fill in the blank. Enthusiasm is great , but what works in point A may not work in point B. Regardless of the importance of prevention and community involvement --if it takes away from your ability to safely do your core mission, its not always a good thing.
                          So if your "B" or it takes away from your core mission then ignore it because it doesn't apply. And if you offer a reason why you do not believe it applies and someone offers a solution and you again feel it won't work then start this process again.

                          Point being I'm trying to help and offer suggestions for people who come here looking for it which is the intent of the Firehouse forums and why I have been asked to moderate. If you post an objection and I see a solution to it then that is what the forums are for. If the solution doesn't apply then ignore it. If you take it as a reformed -------- then that is subjective and your interpretation. I can't do much about that.

                          What is sad is I have received E-Mails from people who will ask questions but do not post it on the forums because they will get attacked. Hey that happens on forums when people can post under pseudonyms. What is equally sad is most of the posts on here are negative. If you do not think your department has the resources, ability, or time to do any prevention... why are you coming here and reading anything? There are some who come here for a reason and glad to help where and when I can, and IF it will work for them.

                          So let's move forward.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Daniel Byrne View Post
                            So if your "B" or it takes away from your core mission then ignore it because it doesn't apply. And if you offer a reason why you do not believe it applies and someone offers a solution and you again feel it won't work then start this process again.

                            Point being I'm trying to help and offer suggestions for people who come here looking for it which is the intent of the Firehouse forums and why I have been asked to moderate. If you post an objection and I see a solution to it then that is what the forums are for. If the solution doesn't apply then ignore it. If you take it as a reformed -------- then that is subjective and your interpretation. I can't do much about that.

                            What is sad is I have received E-Mails from people who will ask questions but do not post it on the forums because they will get attacked. Hey that happens on forums when people can post under pseudonyms. What is equally sad is most of the posts on here are negative. If you do not think your department has the resources, ability, or time to do any prevention... why are you coming here and reading anything? There are some who come here for a reason and glad to help where and when I can, and IF it will work for them.

                            So let's move forward.
                            Don't put effing words in my mouth -- never said ignore it ---
                            ?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              And why I am reading it , id because I have been doing fire prevention since 1971 - I just don't rag on people like how a reformed alcoholic
                              ?

                              Comment

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