By Kaylee Lindenmuth | firstname.lastname@example.org
MAHANOY CITY - A fire company in Mahanoy City is hosting its first youth camp this week, teaching teens from the area about the fire service in hopes they'll be a part of the next generation of our region's bravest.
Today was day two of the Humane Fire Company's first annual youth firefighter camp.
Nineteen participants who range in age from 10 to 15 are taking part in the camp this year, according to firefighter Bill Killian.
"The first day, we talked about the fire service history, how the fire service originated. We went through that with a powerpoint presentation," said Killian. "Frank Zangari came in and he spoke about the junior fire service program and how important it is that we try to recruit younger members because of the lack of volunteers."
"We plan to do this every year and keep the interest in the fire service there."
"From there, we went to the historical [fire] society in Shenandoah and we showed them what was used in the past compared to what you use today, the difference, and how fortunate we are to have state of the art equipment," Killian added. "After lunch, we went down to the county 911 center. They got an overview of how the emergencymanagement agency works, how their emergency operations center works, and from there, we toured the floor where they do the calltaking and dispatching."
When the group returned to Mahanoy City for the rest of day one and into day two, they began learning the fundamentals of an engine company -- establishing a water supply, forcible entry, and more.
Tomorrow, the group will learn CPR and first aid from Mark Wiekrykas from Shenandoah Community Ambulance, fire extinguisher training, and more, Killian said.
"We're fortunate. This is the first year we did it. 19 kids, that's great," said Killian. "We plan to do this every year and keep the interest in the fire service there."
Killian added that he hopes the camp will "boost the ranks" in local fire companies and create interest in the junior firefighter programs, many of which start at age 14.
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