A firefighting/leadership day camp for young women between the ages of 15 and 19. The camp is an Ottawa Fire Services program, run in partnership with Fire Service Women Ontario (Not for Profit). The goal of the camp is to introduce young women to the typically non-traditional field of firefighting, as well as an introduction to Paramedicine and Policing, through visits from our Sister Organizations (guest speakers during lunch).
We have long found that young men/boys are well aware that firefighting is a viable career choice for them from the time they are very young, whereas most young women have yet to consider it by the time they reach young adulthood. We have spoken to many young women who know they would like a hands on, community oriented, and physical job but just aren’t sure what that job could be. We simply want them to see they are capable of more than they imagined they could be, whether it be firefighting, or development of leadership skills!
The camp is an incredible experience and is one of the many outreach activities that targets groups with low Fire Service applicant rates. The girls begin the week, shy, timid and/or unsure of themselves and before the week is over, clear leaders emerge and are often young women who were unaware of their own leadership abilities. There are many desired outcomes of the camp;
· Long term increase in female applicants to the Fire Service (both Ottawa and the girls’ own communities).
· Increased awareness of community involvement, we have guest speakers each year, one being a community volunteer advocate.
· Increase in self confidence of the participants, as they realize a potential that is difficult to quantify without being faced with challenges.
The camp is run by Ottawa Fire Services and Fire Service Women Ontario (a not-for-profit organization). The camp staff are men and women, who volunteer their time, from Ottawa Fire Services (both urban and rural sectors), female firefighters from other communities such as Russell, Napanee, and Martintown, as well as, student volunteers from Algonquin College, La Cité Collegial and St Lawrence College’s Fire Fighter Pre-Service Education and Training programs. The equipment and facilities are in-kind donations from Ottawa Fire Services and costs incurred are covered by the participants fee of $150, the camp is revenue neutral. We have spots available for those chosen to attend who may be experiencing financial hardship. We want to be sure to eliminate as many barriers as possible.
Further information can be found here