I am a volunteer because:
1) It needs doing.
2) I am able, willing and ready to do it.
3) My community has no money for a career department.
4) We are a small town, and don't want or need a career department.
People have been doing this for the last couple hundred years for nothing except that they care for their neighbor and have that little somethin' in them that only the few possess. To those who have this as a PAID career ... lucky you. But, FINANCIAL compensation or no, this is still a career of mine that I strive to be the best in. I am proud to be an unpaid professional, and always will be.
Its not something you want to do, it's something that you have to do... It is something that is in your personality, there is nothing you can do about it. When something bad happens, no matter where it is you want to help. You feel like there is something you can do to make the situation better, you know when to lead, follow and when to get out of the way. You can see the big picture in every incident.
There is a need for Firefighters/EMS personnel throughout the country, the ranks of the Volunteers are getting up in years and the recruiting of new volunteers is getting more and more difficult. Fire Prevention week is coming up soon, Tell your story to someone, tell them the benefits of volunteering, Recuit one person to your department, even if it is just to come in and see what you do.
I met a friend in elementary school who's family was involved in the volunteer fire service in our county. His father was a member of a fire company in another area and had moved into the local area where the fire station is just a mile up the street but wouldn't change his membership.
Well we played together so it was always had to be about firefighting. To beable to join you had to be 16 and up. When we got ready to leave high school was when my friend and other friends (18) joined along with my brother who was two years younger (16) and myself (18).
We started to learn from others in the dept and later went to require classes and classes that were offered for free to add to what we were learning.
Many moved on to other fire service careers some other careers and other areas.
I have been invovled in many operations in the volunteer service which involve committes in the county and state associations.
I was active in our fire, ems and rescue operations for 20 some years as a firefighter/EMT and a driver and now involve with the administrative side of the dept helping to make decisions for our dept and keeping up with new info as it comes along to help the dept.
yes I pay for and yes difference is that I'm on call 14 days 24-7 but has 24 hour security my country 45 dolers in hours and yes I alp pride in being a firefighter and I have been for 17 years in the city I live there is only frivili firefighter they may say we have 2 jobs
For me it was in my blood I grew up listening to stories about fires from my grandpa and my dad. One day when I was home sick from school my dad drug me along to four different calls in one day. He still likes to tell people how my mom reacted when she drove by the fire truck and saw me waving from it. After I started I found it's is pretty much like everybody else on here , adrenaline and people, and brotherhood. Honestly I can't even explain the brotherhood part to people who aren't in the fire service. Even with other firemen I've noticed there isn't a lot of explantion. You just get it and understand it. I think you have to take pride in being a volunteer or else you will probably not be one very long.
Why are you a volunteer fire fighter?
I would like to say it is to help people but in reality that is only part of it. The rest is A. I like it, B, it is exercise, C I learn stuff, D I enjoy some of the others folks in teh dept.
What made you become a volunteer?
I started in Search and Rescue because there was a guy who I considered to be a hero, he was smart and willing to give his life to save another. I joined a VFD when I moved into a rural area because I thought I could help teh community
Are you proud to be part of the Unpaid Professional Brotherhood?
I am proud to be a firefighter--period
Do you take pride in it?
I do teh best I can possible do --so you bet I do
It's been a trend in my family going back to the early 1900's, I'd like to keep it going, hopefully go career sometime in the future