The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) has recently launched the “Be a Hero, Save a Hero” program. The program is designed to encourage citizens to reduce the risk to firefighters across the country. By sharing the Alarm Pledge on social media sites, the foundation hopes to spread the word about the ongoing public-education campaign. Taking the Alarm Pledge, homeowners confirm that their families practice a home fire-escape plan and that they have working up-to-date fire-safety equipment.
Support for the program is provided by Kidde Fire Safety. For each person who takes the pledge, tweets about it on Twitter or likes it on Facebook, Kidde will donate $1 to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Executive director of NFFF Ronald J. Siarnicki says this pledge not only protects citizens but also firefighters. “It will make it better for firefighters who arrive on the scene when there is a fire to know that everyone is out of the house, that there are no rescues to be made but it is simply a matter of extinguishing the fire as opposed to exposing themselves to additional risks because somebody is inside,” Siarnicki says.
“The truth is the world is different today economically and no one entity can do it by themselves,” he added. “Collaboration and public/private partnerships are beneficial because there are more resources to support the cause. So the foundation is trying to find people to partner with … to create a catalyst for change.” Awareness for fire safety has found the perfect form of communication in social media. Thus far, more than 20,000 fans have shared or liked the pledge on Facebook.
Country musician Kix Brooks is also helping to raise awareness of the program on a national radio public-service announcement, the CMA Fan Festival in June, fire shows and monthly Facebook campaigns. “So many more people can be reached in such a shorter amount of time,” Siarnicki said, in reference to social media campaigns.
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