Congressman Jim Gerlach (PA-6th District) congratulated Phoenix Hose, Hook & Ladder Co. on receiving a $111,720 grant for firefighters administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“Phoenixville and the nearby communities served by Phoenix Hose, Hook & Ladder are fortunate to have committed firefighters who answer the public’s calls for help at any time,” Gerlach said. “This grant is well-deserved and will have an immediate and substantial impact on public safety. Making sure firefighters have up-to-date equipment is critical in protecting them as they serve our communities.”
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant funds will be used to buy new firefighter protective gear, helmets and other equipment that will replace outdated and worn gear, said David Meadows, president of Phoenix Hose, Hook & Ladder Co.
“As traditional fundraising methods become less lucrative as sources for funding of volunteer fire companies, federal grants are helping to keep us funded and thus partially offset some of the funding needs from local tax dollars,” Meadows explained.
Former Fire Chief James Gable worked together with Meadows on the grant application. Both men were instrumental in securing the funding.
The objective of the AFG program is to assist fire departments and emergency medical service organizations in meeting their needs for equipment critical to emergency response operations. The program awards grants directly in order to help increase the availability of protective gear, emergency vehicles, training, and other resources.
The Phoenixville Fire Department is a combination volunteer and career paid fire department and was first organized in 1874. The fire company is governed by a board of directors and works closely with the borough-appointed fire chief. Current Fire Chief John Buckwalter started in the post on Jan. 1.
Headquartered at 177 Church Street, the fire company has approximately 35 volunteers, two full-time and 15 part-time career firefighters. Fundraising activities include weekly bingo games every Tuesday at 7 PM, mail fund drive and the annual “Night at the Races,” which will be held on Saturday, March 23.