SOUTHERN ILLINOIS — Rural fire departments nationwide are facing similar challenges in its mission to protect the public. They need more volunteers, and they need to retain those volunteers long-term.
Woodlawn Fire Protection District Chief Bill Shega says his department has about 12 volunteers right now, and they need more. He says there are risks for those they serve if they don’t have enough volunteers ready at a moment’s notice.
Jefferson Fire Protection District Chief Robert Beal says while they aren’t having issues recruiting volunteers, their biggest issue is keeping them around. The reason why, he says, is the training requirements on the volunteers.
For more information on how to become a volunteer firefighter, contact your local fire department.