Rural Fire Departments cash in with Seaside Grants

Volunteer fire departments play an important role in rural Nova Scotia.  As well as providing critical fire fighting services, their halls are used for a variety of social events, such as card games, dances, and community fundraisers. However, the population in rural areas is declining, and raising money for operations and equipment renewal is more and more challenging.

Seaside Communications  has operated a rural internet service throughout much of Nova Scotia in recent years. Through their work,  they came realize the integral role of fire departments, and to see firsthand their ongoing challenges to sustain their operations.  As a company with deep community roots, Seaside looked for practical, constructive ways to recognize that contribution and provide support.

“Volunteer fire departments are at the heart of rural communities,” says Loran Tweedie, CEO of Seaside Communications. “As well as keeping people safe, they host events and serve as important social centres where people come together as a community.”

Accordingly, Seaside developed three initiatives to help make rural fire departments more sustainable:

  1. free internet to rural fire stations, including a public wi-fi hub,
  2. a free website to collect information about rural fire departments and help them to create an online presence, AND
  3. a program for collecting and distributing corporate donations to help fire departments fund their operations.

The grant application process has been designed to be very easy.  Departments use an online form  at NSfire.ca to enter their full contact information, and click Submit. One department is chosen from each county within Seaside's wireless footprint every year to receive a donation.

To find out more about getting free internet service or a website for your rural fire department, visit NSfire.ca

For more information about Seaside Communications, visit their WEBSITE.

Find a complete list of grant recipients HERE.

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Volunteer fire departments in rural Nova Scotia get corporate donations through Seaside Communications' sponsorship program.
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