About 40 rising seventh- and eighth-graders were recognized Friday for completing the county’s Junior Fire Academy.
The program is one of two fire camps put on by the Forsyth County Fire Department. From June 10-14, it held a program for rising sixth-graders.
Now in its third year, the program has grown from about 25 participants per session to about 40 in each.
Fire Division Chief Jason Shivers said the program is a “great outreach” for the department.
“It’s wonderful for the families because we offer this at no cost to them,” he said. “And it gives us a chance to teach the kids about what we actually do.”
Throughout the week, the participants took part in a wide range of activities, such as station tours, a ride-along in a fire truck, fire extinguisher and detector training, ropes course and classes covering topics such as first aid and safety.
On Friday, each junior academy participant was recognized with a certificate of completion, and the firefighters who lead the program also presented “candy awards” to all campers.
These were candy bars with each name representing an individual attribute, such as the Whooper award to the camper who told the best stories and the Dove award to the camper who was the most peaceful.
Kathleen Kraynick, whose son Ryan took part, called the program “a great opportunity for kids.”
“I loved that it was geared for kids this age so they could really learn and take in a lot in addition to having a lot of fun,” she said. “He came home filled with stuff to share every single day … he learned a lot and was proud to be able to talk to us about what he had learned.
“I’m so appreciative to the department for putting this together.”