Today, I wanted to go out to our community and see what questions community members might have for their local volunteer fire department. So I asked a friend in our community, his reply was, “what exactly is it that you need to do your job better?” Of course I wanted to respond with more money for equipment, apparatus, station improvements, more dedicated firefighters, etc. But what “exactly” is something that we need to better our service and mission.
Of course all departments are different and have different needs. Especially on the volunteer level, it is easy for us to point out the fact that we need anything and everything to improve our department . To actually sit back, look at the personnel and certified providers (we all could need another medic… or two) we have, it can veritably be difficult to narrow the list down to what item, training, etc. it would be to better our department and personal as a whole.
So create a list for your department, its best to do this with others for more input, feedback and recommendations. Call it a committee, panel, board, council or even task force. The next is that together you weigh the options out on what is, needed to better the performance and job that is expected of your department. From here, you should have created the number one item on the list.
This doesn’t mean that the other items on the list are not important. Just that you have prioritized your departments needs. Next, make a timeline to accomplish that goal and to attain the items on your list. First being the number one item you and your people have decided as first priority. Set a goal on achieving and retaining that item. Make it realistic with the time, money, donations and fundraising it will take. Go through and do this for every item.
You now have created a goal list. Stay with it. Let all members of the department and community know what they are and what you need. Post your needs here, show others what is on your list as they too may need it, you may find something you need that is not on your list! Get proactive towards the future of your department and what it is that you will need in the future!
Also, if you are in California, check this out… its a surplus program that helps get equipment to fire departments that need it.