HOOSICK FALLS, N.Y. -- The Hoosick Falls Volunteer Fire Department invites the public to join them as they participate in the Recruit NY campaign, a statewide volunteer firefighter recruitment initiative. Volunteer fire departments have found it increasingly difficult to recruit and retain new members, and the result is severe deficiencies in the number of emergency responders. Along with many volunteer departments, the Hoosick Falls Fire Department desperately needs active personnel in order to provide an optimum level of protection for its residents. To generate awareness, the department is holding an open house on Saturday, April 26.

The open house will be hosted at the Hoosick Falls Fire Department on Griffin Ave in the Village of Hoosick Falls from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. It is an opportunity for the public to meet firefighters and learn about the duties and rewards that come with being a volunteer. Hoosick Falls members will conduct tours of the fire station and apparatus, as well as give visitors the opportunity to try on the protective equipment worn by firefighters (turnout gear). Members will also discuss the requirements to become a volunteer, answer any questions, and let visitors know how to get involved in the fire department. Various activities and demonstrations will be held throughout the day. In addition, hot dogs, hamburgers, and other refreshments will be provided while they last.

"Come on out and join us for this unique recruitment day at our firehouse. This is a great opportunity for our friends and neighbors to observe the exciting tasks of a firefighter. Our current members love what they do and they are always willing to help their neighbors in need. We hope our recruitment day will inspire other area residents to join our fire service family."

Recruit NY is an opportunity to raise public awareness about the need for volunteers. The hope is that a collaborative effort made among volunteer fire departments statewide will turn the declining number of volunteer firefighters around. Individuals interested in volunteering should not be discouraged by age, gender, or skill set. The fire service is not limited to interior firefighters; there is always a need for other roles to be filled, such as support personnel, drivers, fire police, and auxiliary.

Volunteer firefighters are committed to mitigating hazardous situations, protecting lives, and preserving property. They gladly accept the risks and challenges of the fire service simply for the satisfaction of helping others. Volunteers live in the communities, in which they serve, enhancing response times and saving taxpayers millions of dollars each and every year.

The Firemen’s Association of the State of NY (FASNY) is encouraging fire departments to join the Recruit NY campaign. Fire departments all across New York State are participating in the recruitment effort by holding open houses on April 26 and 22. FASNY has joined forces with the New York State Association-of-Fire Chiefs, Association of Fire Districts of the State of New York Volunteer Fire Police Association of New York State, and County Fire Coordinators Association of New York to make Recruit NY possible.

For more information on the Hoosick Falls Fire Department open house, visit www.hoosickfallsfd.org or send an e-mail to chief@hoosickfallsfd.org. For more information on the Recruit NY campaign, visit www.recruitny.org or contact you’re the Hoosick Falls Fire department.