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  • FREE In-Person Wildfire Assessment Training Now Available

    When it comes to wildfires, the question isn’t ‘if’ but ‘when.’ Train your Fire Corps members to help local residents prepare their home before the next wildfire strikes. The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC), in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, is offering free in-person training through the Wildland Fire Assessment Program (WFAP).

    The WFAP trains volunteer firefighters and support members, such as Fire Corps, on how to properly conduct assessments for homes located in the wildland-urban interface (WUI). It also provides departments with the printed materials they may need to educate their residents on how to become a more fire-adapted community. Host a WFAP training to make sure your department and community are best prepared for the threat of wildfire.

    The four-part WFAP train-the-trainer course covers understanding the WUI problem, identifying the zones, evaluating the home, and available resources. Each module lasts one hour. Participants will be able to take this information back to their respective departments and teach personnel how to properly conduct a home assessment for residents living in the WUI. Students will be provided with a toolkit, supplemental resources, and a certificate of completion. The class is free and open to all personnel wishing to learn more about WFAP.

    If you are interested in hosting a class, the NVFC will provide the instructor and materials and can also set up an online registration system. The host will need to provide assistance determining a date, time, and venue. A few provisions that will ensure an optimal training experience include the following:

    • The training site should be in a central location, easily accessible to potential students (20 minimum).
    • The venue should have classroom-style seating and audio/visual equipment consisting of PowerPoint capabilities and projector and screen.
    • The hosting agency should help promote the training (at least a three-month window to advertise) to ensure maximum attendance. Customizable resources are available from the NVFC to assist with this.

    If you have questions or are interested in setting up a class, please email Lori Moon at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Classes are limited, so contact us today!

    Visit to learn more about the program.

  • Wildfire Community Preparedness Day Activity Ideas

    The NVFC in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service created the Wildland Fire Assessment Program (WFAP) to train volunteer fire departments and Fire Corps teams on how to properly conduct assessments for homes located in the wildland-urban interface. This is the first program targeted to volunteers that specifically prepares them to evaluate a home and provide residents with recommendations to protect their property from wildfires. Utilize this program to reach out to your community during Wildfire Community Preparedness Day (WCPD) on May 2, 2015.

    Here are some initial steps you can take to get ready as well as project ideas to implement during this time:

    • Take the WFAP online training! The first step to conducting home assessments is to train your department members and Fire Corps team on how to properly conduct assessments for homes located in the WUI. The online trainingis now available at by clicking on the Wildland Fire Assessment Program course title.
    • Host a WFAP class in your department and/or Fire Corps program. The WFAP online course is in a train-the-trainer format so you take the program and resources back to your department and teach potential assessors the skills they need to conduct an assessment.
    • Start a promotional campaign publicizing home assessments. Marketing resources, such as flyers, web banners, and more, are available in the WFAP Toolkit, which is now available at, and in the course materials provided with the online training.
    • Host an open house on May 2 to inform residents about living in the WUI. Ask them to sign up for a home assessment.
    • Post announcements on your department web site and social media pages publicizing the preparedness day and the opportunity to have their home assessed by the department. Link the information back to the WCPD site at so community members can get additional tips and project ideas.
    • Send out flyers to neighborhood businesses, homeowner associations, utility companies, and other fire service agencies (i.e. EMA office, fire marshal, state association, forest service agency, etc.) to get everyone involved.
    • Like the NFPA’s Firewise page on Facebook, follow them on Twitter @Firewise, and join the conversation at #WildfirePrepDay.
    • Let residents know about project ideas that can be done around their home and across their neighborhood. Check out NFPA’s project ideas list.
    • Assess your own home and serve as an example in your neighborhood.
  • America’s PrepareAthon! Gets You Prepared for Disasters

    Disaster preparedness campaign turns awareness to action

    Every community experiences emergencies and severe weather, yet fewer than 50% of Americans feel prepared to handle a disaster. Research has shown knowing what to do when a disaster strikes is critical, especially when seconds matter the most. But it takes practice. Practicing what to do, where to go, and how to stay safe during an emergency empowers individuals and the entire community.
    America’s PrepareAthon! was launched in 2013 as a national, grassroots campaign for action to increase community preparedness and resilience through hazard-specific drills, group discussions, and exercises. The goals of the campaign are to increase the number of individuals who:

    • Understand which disasters could happen in their community;
    • Know what to do to be safe and mitigate damage;
    • Take action to increase their preparedness; and
    • Participate in community resilience planning.

    Ten ways to participate:

    • Sign up for local alerts and warnings, download apps, and/or check access for wireless emergency alerts.
    • Develop and test emergency communications plans.
    • Assemble or update emergency supplies.
    • Learn about local hazards and conduct a drill to practice emergency response actions.
    • Participate in a preparedness discussion, training, or class.
    • Collect and safeguard critical documents.
    • Document property and obtain appropriate insurance for relevant hazards.
    • Make property improvements to reduce potential injury and property damage (mitigation) .
    • Hold a scenario-based continuity of operations tabletop exercise for your organization.
    • Plan with neighbors to help each other and share resources.

    Join the movement! It only takes three easy steps to participate in America’s PrepareAthon!

    • Choose your hazard and preparedness activity.
    • Create an account and register your activity on the web site at
    • Download materials designed to help you plan and promote your day of action. 

    Visit the America’s PrepareAthon! web site to find free, easy to use, customizable, hazard-specific guides and resources designed to help you plan and conduct preparedness activities.
    Participation in America’s PrepareAthon! can take place anytime throughout the year, whenever it is most convenient for you to take part. Last year alone over 27 million Americans participated in America’s PrepareAthon! by bringing attention to the importance of preparedness, building awareness of local hazards, and encouraging individuals and communities across the country to practice the preparedness actions that can help them stay safe. 
    Twice a year, America’s PrepareAthon! holds a National PrepareAthon! Day to bring together stakeholders, communities, and individuals to take action and engage the nation in a conversation on resilience. This spring, National PrepareAthon! Day takes place on April 30 and will encourage individuals and communities to prepare for earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, and winter weather.
    We encourage everyone to participate in America’s PrepareAthon! because being prepared for disasters is a shared responsibility. To find out more about America’s PrepareAthon! go to and take part in the national preparedness conversation by using #PrepareAthon.

Citizens Helping Fire and EMS

Since its start in 2004, Fire Corps has helped fire and EMS departments in 49 states to build more capacity by engaging community volunteers to assist in a variety of non-emergency roles. These community volunteers can make a real difference for their local department, both by expanding the services a department can offer and by enabling first responders to focus more on training and response activities. Fire Corps is a partner program under the Citizen Corps initiative and is funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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