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Helping volunteer fire companies: Different kinds of donations

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Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, 9:05 p.m.

Mt. Pleasant Volunteer Fire Department Chief Jerry Lucia has issued an appeal to the community, underscoring the critical importance of public contributions to volunteer firefighters.

While Mr. Lucia was addressing residents in his service area, his remarks apply far beyond Mt. Pleasant.

As Lucia points out, volunteer fire departments today struggle with the spiking costs for equipment. All fire departments depend on various fundraising activities to help meet their needs.

Community support for bingos, hoagie sales, firemen's fairs, raffles and other fire department activities help the volunteer organizations keep their vehicles and equipment up to date and their volunteers properly trained. According to Lucia, just to suit up a new fireman costs about $2,200.

We appreciate the services these volunteers provide our communities. But what would happen if these organizations found themselves financially imperiled and had to close their doors?

As a community, we should support our volunteer fire departments ­— financially, yes, but with donations of time and talent, too. For example, many departments could benefit from the donated services of a CPA.

There isn't a day that goes by when one local fire department isn't sponsoring some type of fundraiser. Buy a hoagie or a raffle ticket.

Or lend a hand to help your volunteer fire department make ends meet.

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