Gloucester Township, N.J. (CNBNewsnet)--Four volunteer fire stations are teaming up to find the next generation of firefighters November 18, 19 and 20this month, as they begin recruiting high school students to join their ranks.
The Firefighters of Gloucester Township will visit three area high schools to recruit new junior volunteer firefighters as part of its ongoing volunteer recruitment campaign. The campaign will first stop at Timber Creek Regional High School on Monday, Nov. 18. Then on Tuesday, Nov. 19, it will visit Triton Regional High School, followed by a third stop at Highland Regional High School on Wednesday, Nov. 20.
During each visit, fire Chief Michael Brezee, of Erial Fire Company, will meet with students during common lunchtime beginning at 10:23 a.m. to talk about the benefits of becoming a junior volunteer firefighter within the Blenheim, Chews Landing, Erial or Glendora fire companies.
Junior volunteer firefighters are teens ages 16 to 18 years old, who safely assist first responders at the scene of an emergency and practice their training back at the station. No previous experience is required and the training and equipment come at no charge to volunteers. It is an excellent way to develop new skills, make friends and help the community. In addition, volunteer experience can help students stand out from the crowd on their college applications. Students interested in becoming junior volunteer firefighters can visit FirefightersofGloucesterTwp.org to fill out a volunteer inquiry form to learn more.
You Can Be a Volunteer Firefighter Too
In addition to the visit, each high school will receive posters to hang in the hallways designed to recruit local teens to become junior firefighters. The posters include the message “I’m a teenager and volunteer firefighter and you can be one too!” and include information about how students can volunteer at their local fire station.
Early next year, firefighters will visit each school again to give a full PowerPoint presentation about the need for volunteer firefighters to students taking CPR and health classes. Additionally, the campaign will recruit students during each high school’s career fair in the spring.
“We are thrilled to be able to meet with students during our visits to these three great high schools,” said Brezee. “It will allow us to talk to them about the need for volunteer firefighters in our community. Likewise, students will learn how much fun it can be making a difference in the community by serving as a junior volunteer firefighter.”
A Lesson in Helping Others
Aaron Holcomb, 20, a Triton graduate and Glendora Fire Company volunteer firefighter, encouraged students to join. “I think if they want to do something to help their community and better themselves as a person and help better others around them, it would be a great thing to do,” he said. “They have a second family in this business and a place to go when they have no
one else. There’s also a good feeling aspect to it, knowing that you could be helping someone more than you know. It’s overall just a great experience that teaches you camaraderie, courage, respect and even plenty of intelligence.”
Holcomb has been an active firefighter with Glendora for about two-and-a-half years, starting as a junior in high school. The experience gives students a chance to view first-hand how firefighting works to see if it’s the right fit for them, he said.
Ignite Your Passion
Becoming a junior volunteer firefighter is a great opportunity for students to help the community. If you are interested in becoming a Blenheim, Chews Landing, Erial or Glendora fire company junior volunteer firefighter, visit FirefightersofGloucesterTwp.org today and fill out a volunteer inquiry form. Firefighting is our passion. Volunteering is our tradition. Make it yours.
Editor’s Note: If you would like to cover any of the three events or conduct interviews with volunteer firefighter, contact Eric Devlin at 215-884-6499 or [email protected].