Delhi Twp. FD Gets Grant, Recruits Well

By: Lorne Fultonberg Email
By: Lorne Fultonberg Email

The man in charge of recruitment at the Delhi Township Fire Department says volunteer firefighters are scarce. But you wouldn't know it by looking at his department.

Increased advertising, thanks to money from a new grant, DTFD has recruited six new part-time firefighters just this month.

"Trying to get our message out any way in any venue that we can and we're also doing some of the old-fashioned stuff," said Recruitment and Retention Coordinator Jeff Butcher.

Leading the way are public service announcements--airing on WILX--and a Facebook campaign. Butcher says posting photos of new recruits has encouraged others to join in.

The department has a full-time staff of 14 firefighters, but it's the 30 part-time employees that can make a difference in the fire department's response.

"Part-time staff, especially when you're unable to have a lot of full-time employees, it's the part-time staff that helps things go along," said Justin Burns, a new recruit.

Not to mention the relief it can have on an area's finances.

"They save the country billions of dollars each year by having volunteers that can come in and respond at a moments notice," Butcher said.

Some of the new recruits, referred to as yellow-hatters, are trying to get their foot in the door for a full-time position. Others are doing it to help the community. And for many, Butcher says, it's about doing what they've always wanted to do.

"A lot of people are surprised to find their childhood dream is attainable, even though they have their career set and they love what they're doing in their career."

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