Idaho Volunteer Fire and Emergency
Idaho Volunteer Fire and Emergency Groups Support Operation Education in a Big Way
The Star Joint Fire Protection District and the Idaho Volunteer Fire and Emergency Services Association (IVFESA) are making a difference in the lives of students involved in the Operation Education Scholarship Program at the University of Idaho. University of Idaho alumnus Captain Dave Sparks ‘90 and honorary alumnus Chief Kevin Courtney heard about the program and immediately constructed a plan to support the program.
“When I first heard about the program, I knew right away this was something the Fire Service should be involved with,” said Sparks. “I presented it to the Volunteer Association at the station and everyone was on board. I couldn’t be prouder of my alma mater for pioneering this program.”
Courtney, who is Star fire chief and president of IVFESA, was given honorary alumni status last fall because of his dedication to Operation Education. Courtney spoke about the program at the National Fire Chief’s Conference in Washington D.C. He also made a presentation on Operation Education to the board members of IVFESA, who then voted to make a contribution.
“Operation Education is something we all should support,” said Courtney. “The men and women of the armed forces drop everything to fight for our freedoms, which were attacked on September 11, 2001 when 367 fire, police and EMS personnel were killed and thousands of other innocent people lost their lives. This is the least we can do for our military personnel.”
This is the first gift that both the Star Fire District Volunteer Association and the IVFESA have given to an outside entity. From their initial fundraising efforts, they have donated $3,540 to date to Operation Education. The Fire District Volunteers raise funds through an annual pancake feed, and typically those dollars are used to purchase new equipment and specialized training for the district. The Idaho Volunteer Fire and Emergency Services Association use their funds to train and equip other Idaho volunteer fire departments and fire fighters. However, the Star Fire District Volunteers and members of the IVFESA knew their contributions to the Operation Education Scholarship Program could have a great impact, which convinced them to make the investment.
Both groups have contributed to the program for two years in a row, and their commitment serves as inspiration to others throughout Idaho to become involved in the program.
[Top Photo Caption]
Captain Dave Sparks (left) and Chief Kevin Courtney (right)