Firefighters host children’s summer camp
By Staff Sgt. Joshua Edwards, 17th Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published July 23, 2018
GOODFELLOW AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- The Goodfellow Fire Department hosted a five-day Junior Firefighter Camp for 12 children, aged 10 to 12 years old, at the fire station starting July 16.
“Junior firefighter camp is really just an excellent way for the fire department to interact with the community in a fun and exciting way,” said 17th Civil Engineer Squadron assistant fire chief, Jason Garcia. “We get the kids in here and treat them to a five-day course, an introductory to firefighting principles, stuff we are going to do in the field.”
During the first day, the children gathered for orientation to find out what they would be learning throughout the week.
“It really shows the kids great opportunity for teamwork building and what it can really do for them in the future because there really isn’t anything a firefighter can do without utilizing their team members,” said Garcia.
Throughout the week of the camp, the firefighters taught the children a variety of skills including how to use fire extinguishers, tie a variety of knots and how to safely climb and descend a ladder.
“My favorite part was the search and rescue and firefighter truck rides,” said junior firefighter, Gareth Kelly. “I actually got to feel like a real firefighter saving someone and a firefighter going into a rescue.”
On the final day, the students toured the Louis F. Garland Department of Defense Fire Academy and participated in a graduation ceremony where they received certificates and a fire badge.
“Thank you kids for being interested and coming out to this,” said Maj. Nicholas Anderson, 17th CES commander. “You’re taking time out of your summer to come here and learn something. It’s kind of like going back to school for half the day, every day. We know you don’t have to that, so thank you for coming here, learning a little bit and making yourselves better.”
The Junior Firefighter Camp is a yearly event, with the next one happening in the summer of 2019.
“If someone is interested in the course, all they have to do is give us a call and we will put them on a waiting list,” said Garcia. “It fills up really quickly because we are only allowed to take 12 kids. We have a pretty small training room and small fire station.”
If you are interested in having a child attend the junior Firefighter Camp for next year or would like more information, please call the Goodfellow Fire Station at 325-654-3539.