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Funding for VFDs Not Just A Seasonal Thing
The official start of spring is just over a week away, and with that warmer temperatures.
As temperatures go up, so does the danger of fires.
Many of Texoma's area volunteer fire departments work hard to bring in much needed funds this time of year before the wildfire season heats up.
However, volunteer fire departments can sometimes be forgotten except for in those really active fire seasons.
Greg Lynn, Electra Volunteer Fire Department Fire Chief, says Texoma VFDs could not survive without the support of the community members they serve.
Lynn says, "The more support we can get, the more we can do for the community as far as fire protection and fire education."
He says it takes a tremendous amount of money to keep a VFD operating.
"We've got to have our safety equipment. We've got to be ready to roll at all times. The fuel is a tremendous cost," Lynn exclaims.
Lynn says while the community is doing enough to keep their fire department open, other VFDs struggle to bring in funds.
Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation President Teresa Pontius caves says because of the shortage in funds some local volunteer fire departments may experience, her organization can help.
"We have to keep our volunteer fire department ready to fight fires and keep us safe," Pontius Caves says.
For instance, Pontius Caves says the foundation helps about 126 volunteer fire departments in Texoma, ten of which are in Wichita County.
"We have three main priorities. The first is we need them to be safe so we have bunker gear," Pontius Caves says. "Our second priority is communication. After they're safe, they need to know there's a fire."
The third she says, "...is to help them with trucks; truck matches, we can't buy a whole complete truck but we can do truck matches."
She encourages everyone to donate to their local VFD to make sure they continue keeping everyone safe year round.
Pontius Caves says if you don't know which one to donate to, you can donate to the foundation's Volunteer Fire Department Fund.
For more information, you can call the Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation at 940.766.0829 or by visiting their website.
Also, two weeks from this Saturday, on the March 29, Lake Arrowhead VFD will be holding a big fundraiser in the pavilion area of Lake Wichita Park.
There will be demonstrations, a med evac helicopter display, and much, much more.
If you'd like additional information, you call Fire Chief Mike Hall at 940.781.4338.