Keeping people in neighborhoods engaged with the NFPA's Firewise® Program can be promoted by providing opportunities for participation. Communities that plan and implement community-wide events that provide opportunities for each resident to participate get more buy-in from residents throughout the community as a whole. This participation in educational and on the ground work opportunities can create a more resilient community over time. Read the story of these two communities to see how community efforts can create a sense of ownership and involvement in Firewise activities by many residents in a neighborhood.
Baker Creek at La Veta, Colorado
Baker Creek conducted many Firewise activities throughout the year. In addition to cleaning fire hazard debris from around condominiums, along a community access road, and in open space near residences, the community is creating a shaded fuel break along the main access road. The community counts 110 volunteer hours, and over 50 slash piles burned.
Baker Creek tells us, “Our Baker Creek Firewise Community has been energized by the early efforts of our key leaders. We found that property owners have become much more involved with their defensible space efforts as a result of participating in our Firewise Day activities.”
Deer Creek Valley Ranchos, Colorado
Residents of Deer Creek Valley Ranchos volunteered to help the Platte Canyon Fire Protection District (PCFPD) at their slash clean-up event the last week of August and the first weekend in September of 2014. Homeowners assisted PCFPD by directing traffic and helping people unload slash from their trailers and trucks. PCFPD contracted with a landscape company to chip the slash and haul it away.
Dear Creek Ranchos says, “We hold an annual clean-up event with homeowners volunteering to clean up trash and debris along roadways in the development. We send out Firewise tips via email with our HOA group email list, reminding homeowners of things they can do to keep their properties protected. We publish a Firewise article quarterly in our HOA newsletter and will include pertinent information on the Firewise program and wildfire safety.”
Photo submitted by Baker Creek at La Veta, Colorado