As of 01/01/2017, The Tramway Fire Department implemented a Junior Firefighter program.
Over 70% of the fire and rescue personnel who protect our nation are volunteers. Yet, statistics show that while fire and rescue departments call volume is steadily increasing, the number of volunteers is decreasing. The causes for the downward trend in volunteers are varied, including increasing time demands on two-income families, more rigorous training standards, and limited advocacy for volunteering among youth.
Retention and recruitment of new members has never been more challenging. In response to the challenge of recruiting volunteers, the Tramway Rural Fire Department initiated a Junior Firefighter program to encourage the involvement of youth. Encouraging young people to enter the emergency services as a career often places departments in competition with careers that pay better, and provide a better preparation and learning structure for school age youth. Junior Member programs provide an opportunity to encourage and interest youth in the field of emergency service, as well as training and educational mechanisms to prepare them for future employment.
Whether volunteer or career, departments may benefit from programs that allow participation by youth in the activities of the emergency services. The Tramway Rural Fire Department along with the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission recognizes the need for this initiative to reach out to North Carolina’s youth and engage them in non-operational roles within emergency departments. Reaching out to people when they are young has long range effects, and encouraging youth to take part in the emergency services is extremely beneficial to local communities and departments.
Benefits of junior programs include:
Allowing youth to gain insight and interest in becoming long-term members of the emergency services
Increasing awareness among youth about volunteering and supporting the fire and rescue services
Providing departments with additional help in accomplishing non-firefighting or non-emergency tasks
Leadership development for America’s youth who will be tomorrow’s leaders
Educating parents and mentors on the importance of encouraging volunteerism
*****Anyone interested in the Junior Firefighter Program or interested in becoming a Junior Firefighter with the Tramway Rural Fire Department, Please contact or visit the Tramway Fire Department during normal business hours.*****