Erich K Squire recently discussed the importance of volunteer firefighter programs and how they benefit firefighters and the community.
Volunteer firefighter programs transform communities and lives. Former volunteer firefighter Erich Squire discussed the benefits they provide. In recent years, the number of volunteer firefighters in local communities and around the country has diminished. In Pennsylvania, the number of volunteer firefighters fell from 300,000 to 38,000 in a few decades. In the same amount of time, call volume has jumped 300 percent.
Mr. Squire explained that volunteers still account for a majority of firefighters across the country. The benefits they provide local communities are infinite, which is why these organizations need support.
A significant impact volunteer firefighter programs have on communities is through finances. The National Fire Protection Association states that more than 800,000 of the 1.1 million firefighters across the U.S. are volunteers. A large majority of the fire departments around the country are made up entirely of volunteers, saving taxpayers almost $50 billion each year.
Aiding the Community
Volunteer firefighters save lives and communities. The ability to help neighbors during a time of need results in boosted self-esteem, a feeling of accomplishment, and pride. Volunteer firefighters learn countless new skills, become part of a team, and make a tangible difference in their communities.
Virtually any type of volunteer effort can advance a person’s career. Volunteer firefighting creates networking opportunities with community members and officials, resulting in valuable references, new career opportunities, and lifelong friendships. In small communities, whom a person knows can take them far, and volunteer firefighting is a noble way to become known.
Volunteer firefighter opportunities aren’t only available to young candidates. Many volunteer firefighter positions are part-time with flexible schedules. This can be ideal for retired individuals who still want to serve their communities. There are many volunteer positions available within a squad in addition to physically fighting fires, and they’re often ideal for older community members.
Stay Physically Fit
Fighting fires is a physical job that requires firefighters to be in top shape. They must lift heavy objects, transport victims, carry water, and perform numerous other physically demanding tasks. Many fire departments, volunteer or not, enforce fitness requirements and regular exercise routines. Volunteering as a firefighter can help an individual stay in top shape, so they can better enjoy other areas of life too.
Erich Squire, Volunteer Firefighter
Mr. Squire is now a successful business executive, but for three years, he served as a volunteer firefighter, helping his local community during times of need. Squire’s home was saved from catastrophic destruction by a volunteer firefighter department. He and his family now support their local volunteer firefighter department financially, so it can continue to thrive while saving countless homes and lives.