Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Volunteering 24/7 with Lights and Sirens

Name: James Cole Hauser
From: Pine Village, Indiana
Votes: 22

Volunteering 24/7 with Lights and Sirens

James Cole Hauser

I began volunteering with the Pine Village Community Fire Department in
2013, and obtained my Emergency Medical Responder Certification at
the age of 15. This has allowed me to respond to emergency medical
calls and provide medical care for members of my community. Through
extensive training including firefighting, auto extrication, civilian
and firefighter search and rescue, wildland firefighting, mass
casualty incidents and responding to emergency calls, I have realized
that the fire service is where I belong.

Volunteering with my local fire department has taught me the true meaning of
teamwork, responsibility, dedication, and empathy. I have been in
situations where a community members are watching their home, filled
with all of their worldly possessions, burning out of control. I
have worked franticly to save the life of a heart attack victim as
their loved ones were watching over my shoulder crying. My fellow
firefighters and I work as a team to safely mitigate a multitude of
situations that arise in my community.

The commitment to being a volunteer firefighter is staggering. From a
time commitment standpoint, I have trained over 200 hours per year to
obtain various certifications and knowledge to safely respond to
emergency situations within my community. There are monthly training
and business meetings to attend generally lasting four to five hours
each. Being in a rural area, a simple medical call can last over two
hours if the patient needs to be transported to a trauma center which
is 45 minutes away. But one of the biggest commitments is being
available to drop everything, Thanksgiving dinner, opening Christmas
presents, singing happy birthday, having dinner on a first date, or
sleeping the night before a big test so you can respond to help
members of my community during some of their darkest hours.

In addition to my local Fire Department, I volunteer with and have
become a responding member of the Indiana Department of Homeland
Security District 4 Task Force within the Emergency Medical Services
Element. IDHS District 4 Task Force is the only State of Indiana
asset to be deployed to an actual disaster, to the Henryville, IN
tornado and Hurricane Sandy on the east coast. Training alongside
this group of dedicated individuals has been a tremendous learning
experience, and has taught me the true meaning of teamwork. I have
seen firsthand the amount of work that takes place behind the scenes
to allow emergency responders to go into communities effected by
disaster to render aid.

My commitment to volunteering has allowed me to grow as a person, and
assist my family, friends, community, and even on a national scale.
I am enrolled at Eastern Kentucky University in the School of Fire
Protection and Safety Engineering Technology. I plan on volunteering
on the local fire department while in school as I feel it is
something that will ground me in the community and allow me to give
back to the community that I will call home for the next four years.

Join our Facebook group "Volunteers for a Better World".