Is your department struggling with recruiting diverse firefighters and emergency responders? Nonprofit FIRE 20/20 has just released two, free Why I Chose Fire™: Next Generation diversity recruitment videos designed to encourage qualified, inclusive, diverse and safety-conscious 15-25 year-old women and people of color to explore opportunities in the fire service.
One is targeted for the volunteer fire service and the other is for career opportunities.
"The career video is perfect for our local broadcasting channels, school media, social media and community presentations," said Mat Fratus, Fire Chief, Rialto, CA. "It's more than a 'hook' for people exploring career options; it's an illustration of what today's fire service is, where it is headed and the opportunities that are there for everyone."
"With the state of the economy and peoples' busy schedules, many departments around the country are facing a shortage of volunteer firefighters," explained Heather Schafer, Executive Director of the National Volunteer Fire Council. "FIRE 20/20's free recruitment video offers volunteer departments a fresh opportunity to reach out to a new demographic and the next generation of volunteer firefighters."
Both Why I Chose Fire: Next Generation videos focus on firefighter values, including service, commitment, caring and compassion. They feature interviews with passionate young firefighters from diverse backgrounds highlighting the benefits of serving as a firefighter.
These include: training and education, opportunities to work with new technology, the job's physicality, flexible schedule, camaraderie and a strong sense of family.
The videos feature music of Grammy winners Cee Lo Green and Bruno Mars. FIRE 20/20 can customize the introduction and closing of the video to create a department specific recruitment video for a small fee. This allows organizations to promote benefits of their department and their commitment to inclusion and diversity.
Why I Chose Fire: Next Generation was developed with a grant from Motorola Solutions Foundations, the charitable arm of Motorola Solutions Inc. It is designed for use by career and volunteer fire and emergency services departments, college fire science programs, fire academies, Cadet/Explorer programs, high school/college guidance counselors and diversity organizations.
"Motorola Solutions and Motorola Solutions Foundation have partnered with fire service and first responders for decades," said Matt Blakely, Director of the Motorola Solutions Foundation. "It is important to support training programs that improve first responders' ability to keep themselves and their communities safe. We're proud to sponsor these videos because they may inspire individuals from a variety of backgrounds to enter the fire service."
Additional sponsors who are committed to a qualified, inclusive, diverse and safety-conscious fire service and the Why I Chose Fire: Next Generation video include Tyco, Scott Safety, PBI Performance Products, Inc. and CPS Human Resources Consulting.
"Fire and emergency services departments around the U.S. and Canada continually ask us for help and tools that will enhance their effectiveness in recruiting qualified, diverse firefighters," said Odessa Kawai, FIRE 20/20 Interim Executive Director. "Our Motorola Solutions Foundation grant and committed sponsors allow FIRE 20/20 to provide the video to fire organizations at no cost."