The Advantages Of Being A Volunteer Firefighter

In times of emergency, we all know how important our first responders are. Our communities rely on the skilled, dedicated volunteers who put public service first. As the son of a retired firefighter, I know how important the fire service is to our community and communities across the Finger Lakes area.
The good news is that hundreds of volunteer fire departments across New York are taking steps to encourage members of their communities to answer the call of volunteer service. On Saturday, April 25 and Sunday, April 26, I strongly urge each of you to visit your local volunteer fire department and participate in the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York’s (FASNY) RecruitNY initiative, a program designed to encourage citizens to visit, support and join their local fire departments.
FASNY’s RecruitNY event will highlight the duties and rewards that come with being a volunteer firefighter and raise public awareness of the need for volunteers. It also gives the public a chance to talk one-on-one with the firefighters within their community. These events are designed for the public to hear what it takes to be a firefighter, get questions answered and learn how to get involved.
To see a listing of open houses within the community, please visit
FASNY understands that the cost of being a student is not easy, which is why they developed the Higher Education Learning Plan (HELP). The program was created as an initiative for people to become volunteers. FASNY HELP offers opportunities for students to receive up to 100 percent tuition reimbursement for up to 80 credited hours while serving as a volunteer firefighter and maintaining good grades. To apply, candidates must first complete their local fire department’s volunteer membership process and the Volunteer Fire Department Commitment form. For information on the program and specifics on how to apply, visit or call FASNY toll free at 800-232-7692. The program was made possible through a Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant awarded by the Department of Homeland Security.
What do you think?  I want to hear from you. Send me your feedback, suggestions and ideas regarding this or any other issue facing New York State. You can always contact my district office at (315) 781-2030, email me at, find me by searching for Assemblyman Brian Kolb on Facebook, and follow me on Twitter.

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