Learning about fire safety

Head Start students visit fire fighters in Webber Township

WEBBER TWP – To many children, the image of turnout gear-clad firefighters coming at them through a wall of smoke and fire doesn’t inspire feelings of safety and security. A lot of little ones don’t realize there are actually people beneath these alien-looking uniforms – people sent into the blaze to save them.

The Webber Township Fire Department recently hosted the Head Start students from FiveCAP’s Robert F. Williams Child Development Center in Baldwin and the goal of the field trip was to teach children fire safety while helping them overcome their fear of firefighters.

“This really helps,” said RFW teacher Sherry Garrett. “I had a child who last year was just petrified and this year she made it through the whole field trip.”

Firefighters from Webber Township were joined in welcoming the students by their colleagues from Yates Township, Baldwin and the U.S. Forest Service. Among the group were some familiar faces, which Garrett said further alleviated the children’s fears.

“It was neat,” she said, “because some of our parents are firefighters and our bus driver and her husband are both firefighters, too, so the kids got to see that.”

The children received coloring books and stickers from the fire fighters, got to go inside the fire truck and learned all about the tools used to fight fires.

“It built on what we did in the fall, when firefighters came to the classroom,” Garrett said. “We’re just working to get them so they’re not afraid and learn safety. It went awesome. The kids really enjoyed it.”