Volunteering and versatility: the American firefighters differ from Russian

Paramedics, firefighters and rescue workers in the US are not divided in different departments and de facto belong to the same service called 911. The majority of the workers in the US lifeguards don’t get salaries and travel in their spare time. This is stated in the video “voice of America”.

Волонтерство и многофункциональность: чем американские пожарные отличаются от российских

Photo: Shutterstock

“In the whole country, more than 1.1 million firefighters, of which 750-800 thousand volunteers, and the remaining 300-350 thousand professional rescuers,” says Sean Stokes, head of the Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Dep.

To become a lifeguard, volunteer in the US maybe almost everyone, no age restrictions. However, it is necessary to pass the exam on physical training and also training. After about six months, students receive a diploma of paramedic.

“At this stage you decide whether you want to be a paramedic and to focus on the provision of first aid, and work in an ambulance, or to be a fireman. If you want to be a firefighter, you go to the fire Academy for 6 months,” shared Adam Searle, a volunteer firefighter.

According to rescuers, calls for fires or accidents amount to less than a third of incoming calls, tells Gus Sawatzky in ordinary time service of the US marine corps and a lifeguard on weekends.

Волонтерство и многофункциональность: чем американские пожарные отличаются от российских

A screenshot from the video “Voices of America”

“About 70% of the incoming calls relate to emergency calls. I conducted a training on paramedic and perform complex resuscitation procedures: intubation, establish IVS, give a wide range of medications, doing electrocardiograms”, – shares his experience Sawatzki.

Among the volunteers, many immigrants, for example, Adam Searle, by the way, working for five days in a Bank, originally from the UK, and Nigeen Asadi from Iran. There is only one requirement.

“Having U.S. citizenship or green card is required due to necessary checks of biographical data. We use a special trust as visited other people’s houses,” says Sean Stokes.

Knowledge of a foreign language is an advantage, because the rescuers regularly receives calls from people who don’t speak English.

Волонтерство и многофункциональность: чем американские пожарные отличаются от российских

A screenshot from the video “Voices of America”

“I’m Iranian, the patient spoke only in Farsi, and I could understand him and speak with him,” tells the story of Nigeen Asadi.

The rescue volunteers often work on weekends, in his spare time, insure or colleagues in the evening on weekdays.

Волонтерство и многофункциональность: чем американские пожарные отличаются от российских

A screenshot from the video “Voices of America”

“Because COVID-19 shifts have been reduced significantly, but whenever possible I tried to take at least 8-10 hours a week, each shift can last for 6-12 hours depending on where we are. I try to take as many hours,” says Nigeen.

To Supplement the budget of the fire Department, rescue volunteers often send letters asking for donations, or organize bingo for local residents. The funds received for rescue workers updating equipment and service equipment to fulfill its main mission – to help those in trouble.

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