The Oklahoma City Fire Corps has logged over 700 hours in training and public outreach disaster preparedness/fire safety education in the last year alone. Formed in 2007 in response to the call for community involvement after Hurricane Katrina, the program has 16 highly trained volunteer members with varying backgrounds and areas of expertise. 

Before joining the program, each member must first graduate from the Oklahoma City Fire Department Citizen Fire Academy (CFA).  This 8-week academy provides members with an excellent foundation on which to build their volunteer involvement.  Once the CFA has been completed, volunteers are eligible to join Fire Corps as a recruit.  As recruits, volunteers must complete more training in FEMA Independent Study classes and receive Community Emergency Response Training (CERT).

The Oklahoma City Fire Department is largely self-sufficient, so Fire Corps assistance is limited to specific items. The program reports to the Fire Department Emergency Management Liaison and focuses mainly on emergency management activities. Recently, the program has integrated training with the American Red Cross to promote disaster preparedness. These training sessions are usually held at the request of businesses for “safety days,” but information is also distributed at large-scale events such as conferences. The Oklahoma City Fire Corps has also taken time to reach vulnerable populations by translating resources into Spanish to assist the Latino community and promoting safety and preparedness to people with special needs.

The group has many ideas to expand their program in the future.  Volunteers are hoping to create preparedness kits for first-time home buyers, get youth involved in their programs, and work on a response procedure for rehab assistance or other non-operational duties.

For more information on the Oklahoma City Fire Corps, contact Cheryl Klein at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

From left to right: Pat Pryor, Mike Eaton, and Mark Long pass out Disaster Preparedness/Fire Safety information at a local business during National Preparedness Month.  
 

Mark Long and Cheryl Klein passed out disaster preparedness and fire safety information to over 600 people at the GE Oil and Gas Employee Health Fair.   

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