For teens, summer is a time for sun, fun, and relaxation. For members of Teen Advocates for Community Safety (TACS), summer is also a time to help their community. TACS has approximately 30 members and is part of the Williams County Fire Corps, which is run out of the Cedar Park Fire Department in Texas.

TACS volunteers recently canvassed their community with members of their fire department and Meals on Wheels staff to test residents’ smoke alarms, pass out fans to beat the summer heat, and provide meals to the homebound elderly population. TACS received replacement smoke alarms from the Fire Corps donation program sponsored by First Alert. By partnering with Meals on Wheels, volunteers are able reach a vulnerable population and have the opportunity to speak to them about home safety during their scheduled meal deliveries.

In addition to providing residents with smoke alarms and home safety tips, TACS volunteers also passed out “Vials of LIFE” (Lifesaving Information for Emergencies). The “vial” is a plastic bag that contains medical forms that the residents fill out with their information including any health conditions and medications or prescriptions. The “vial” is kept on the top shelf of the refrigerator – to better protect it from fire – and a sticker is placed in the front window to indicate the presence of the “vial” to emergency responders.

The TACS program has provided many teens with the opportunity to serve their community and learn about the fire and emergency services. The program won the 2010 Texas Lone Star Achievement Award from the Texas Fire Chiefs Association and the 2010 Citizen Corps National Achievement Award. For more information on the program visit or contact Yvonne Lane at 512-401-5160 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
If your Fire Corps program would like to take advantage of the First Alert smoke alarm donation program, fill out the Smoke Alarm Request form found on the Fire Corps web site at Donations will be made to registered Fire Corps programs while supplies last, so act quickly to take advantage of this offer. Registered Fire Corps programs can apply to receive up to 12 dual sensor smoke alarms, or 24 photo smoke alarms, or 24 ion smoke alarms to install in your community.

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