Serving as a volunteer in the Wolfville Fire Department is both a rewarding and challenging commitment. Membership involves attending weekly trainings on Monday evenings, responding to alarms, attending meetings and serving on various committees within the department.
The process of joining the department begins when an individual submits an application to the membership committee. On a monthly basis the committee reviews applications and considers applicants for an interview. The interview is a fairly informal process by which the membership committee can ask some important questions regarding the commitment and availability of the applicant, as well as providing the applicant with a realistic picture of service in the department. Following the interview, the applicant will be invited to sit-in on weekly trainings for one month to observe, begin to learn the way things are done, and most importantly begin to meet the other members of the department. After this month of observation, the membership committee will present the applicant for voting at the monthly meeting of the department. At this meeting, members will vote on each applicant to determine their acceptance in the department.
If the applicant is voted in as a new member, they will be outfitted with bunker gear and a pager, and will begin their service with the department as a probationary member. While probationary members may begin attending alarms right away, their duties on alarms will be limited as they are still in the process of receiving their initial training; which often requires extra commitment in the early stages of membership.
After 6 months of service in the department the probationary member will be reviewed by the membership committee and if their stats are good they may be permitted voting privileges in the department. Following one year of service, the membership committee will again review the member and if in good standing will remove the individual from their probationary membership period.
During the first two years as a volunteer in the department, every member is required to complete the NFPA Fire Fighting Level 1 training course offered through the Kings County Firefighters’ Association and the Nova Scotia Firefighters School. In addition, every member of the department is provided with training in basic life support (CPR-C and Defib). If the member is interested in additional commitment, they may choose to take extra training and join one of the special teams within the department. In concert with several neighbouring fire departments in Kings County, the department has a Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Team and a High-Angle Rope Rescue Team which respond to special emergencies within the County. Although membership is a significant time commitment, serving as a volunteer in the Wolfville Fire Department is a rewarding experience for those who wish to give back to their community. “We never close."