Volunteer fire departments across the region have received over $14,000 in new funding, thanks to a former national television talk-show host.

The Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs have partnered with Jenny’s Heroes Canada – ran by Jenny Jones of the former Jenny Jones Show. The organization supports volunteer firefighters across the province by providing an equipment grant of up to $50,000.

The Pellatt United Firefighters will receive $9,000 for a new portable pump. The pump will be utilized to better manage home and bush fires where a water supply is not readily available. The new pump will also reduce the turnaround time for the tanker, to less than half of the time it takes now.

The Redditt Volunteer Fire Department will receive $2,500 for a new computer, printer, television and DVD player, as the department is currently lacking the equipment. Currently, all paperwork and forms are completed and printed outside of the department, which takes time away from other duties. The television and DVD player will be used for training.

The Wabigoon Fire Department will see $3,000 for new emergency equipment. The first aid equipment will help to enhance firefighters’ ability to quickly and effectively treat patients on scene, as it’s not unusual for firefighters from Wabigoon to be at a highway scene before police and paramedics.

"This generous offer from Jenny Jones provides several volunteer fire departments the opportunity to buy much needed equipment so that they can offer the skilled, competent and caring services to the communities they are committed to protect," says OAFC President, Chief Stephen Hernen.

"We are grateful to Jenny Jones and her Foundation for recognizing the need that these departments have. Often, volunteer fire departments are challenged to purchase updated equipment, gear and technology to protect their firefighters. This grant will go a long way to supporting this important community service."

Jenny Jones grew up in London, Ontario and wanted to give back to her home province.

"I have a profound respect for anyone who chooses a life of service to the community," says Jenny, "even more so when the risks are great. My hope is that my contribution will keep Ontario's volunteer firefighters safe and help them provide the best possible service to their communities."

There were over 100 applicants to the program, which began earlier this year in May.

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