Resources for the volunteer fire service

Almost 70 percent of all U.S. firefighters are volunteers. The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) is working with the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) to help keep volunteers healthy and safe, and to keep the volunteer fire service strong now and in the future.

Recruitment and retention

Many fire departments are experiencing more difficulty with recruiting and retaining members than ever before. Can the trend in declining volunteerism be reversed? Information collected reveals that departments that have taken steps to deal with the problems have seen a resurgence in volunteerism.

If your volunteer department is looking for ideas and proven successful practices in recruitment and retention, download our publication “Retention and Recruitment for the Volunteer Emergency Services: Challenges and Solutions.” PDF 3.4 MB

Health and safety

The volunteer fire service has its own distinct issues related to health and safety, including:

USFA and the NVFC are studying these challenges to create strategies that will reduce on-duty casualties. Our study will also look at health and safety challenges for volunteer wildland firefighters.

We expect to publish the results of the study in December 2016. For more information, please contact Bill Troup.

More resources for the volunteer fire service