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Fire Departments Need Volunteers

November 25, 2013

The Clearview Volunteer Fire Department will host a craft show in an effort to create awareness regarding the importance of volunteering time to local fire departments....

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OhValleyGuy

Nov-25-13 8:14 PM

Well stated, Triton. Back when VFDs reached their peak in, say, the late 70s and 80s, there were fewer extra curricular activities to participate in outside of work or school, no home computers, 3 or 4 TV channels for most, video gaming wasn't what it is now, etc. The population in the valley was a lot bigger then. Training requirements and continuing educations requirements weren't what they are now; There are many things working against volunteer membership.

That said, many VFDs are their own worst enemies for the reasons Triton listed above, and because many departments have cliques that form, good members are run off for having differing opinions or not being part of the in crowd. I remember a particular dept. where they ran off several guys for petty reasons, then hung a sign outside begging for members. I shook my head, as they just ran off some great active people!

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Triton

Nov-25-13 12:51 PM

There is no doubt that VFDs are important to communities and no doubt that they need manpower. It is a time consuming activity. How does one talk around another problem of VFD recruiting? It is not only the idea of answering calls in the middle of the night, or the time spent training and fund raising, its partly also about the people who inhabit the firehouses. In some there are recently retired people doing great service to others, and in some of the largest idiots of each community, eaten up with imagined authority, in love with the instant respect demanded of citizens. Many do not want to volunteer because sometimes VFDs are pretty much out of control, and some have histories of arson, embezzlement, drunken brawls, and on. Its important that fire companies understand that they do important work and it must be closely supervised. Warm body recruiting does not equal fireman and sometimes the staff is the greatest deterrant to recruiting. Some VFDs are the center of turmoil.

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