Veterans Fire Corps

Veterans Fire Corps (US Military Veterans Only)

Created in 2010 in cooperation with the US Forest Service, the Veterans Fire Corps trains and engages teams of military veterans in wildland fire mitigation. Projects include fuels reduction, fire effects monitoring, educational outreach, pre-fire preparation of burn units, and participation in prescribed fires. SCA’s Veterans Fire Corps members work together for 13 weeks, organized in teams of five Corps Members and one Project Leader. The leader is most often a graduate of a prior Veteran sFire Corps program who has proven to be a capable firefighter, manager,and logistician.

The training provided to participants has three components: training as an SCA Corps member, USFS fire training, and field-based practical experience. Each training component builds on the prior training, focusing not only on technical aspects, but also on softer skills such as leadership, group dynamics, and conflict management. When not working on fuels mitigation, members may work with USFS staff in other areas, such as trails, archeology, fisheries, or other projects. Members receive weekly living allowances. Housing and field-based meals are provided, but positions may require camping in the field for a significant portion of the program. 

SCA waives application fees for all US Military Veterans.

SCA provides programming that works for Veterans looking for ways to transition to civilian life

Trainings Offered: 

  • Wildland Fire Chainsaws
  • Basic Wildland Firefighter
  • Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior
  • Introduction to Incident Command System
  • Standards for Survival
  • Human Factors on the Fireline
  • Introduction to the National Incident Management System
  • Wilderness First Aid, CPR, and Red Card Certification
 
Eligibility Requirements: 
  • US Military Post-9/11 Veterans
  • DD214 form showing Honorable Discharge or General Discharge (under Honorable Conditions)
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Ablility to pass a criminal background and motor vehicle check
  • Ablility to pass USFS Pack Test at the “arduous” level (3-mile hike with 45-pound pack in 45 minutes)
  • Ablility to hike long distances with a heavy pack and remain composed under pressure while serving in rugged terrain
  • Comfort and ability with using a chainsaw and other hand tools
  • Comfort and ability with living and serving with veterans from all service branches

 

Download the VFC Flyer (PDF) for more information or to spread the word.

 

 

Related Posts & Program Information

The men and women I’m training know we’re about to confront a merciless enemy. We are all military veterans, and in the field we have an objective, a plan, and the flexibility to change tactics midstream — just as in the armed forces.

In this case our adversary isn’t al-Qaida or any of the other combatants I faced with the U.S. Marines in Afghanistan and Iraq; it’s not even human but it eats, breathes and grows.

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After graduating from high school in Williamson, Wayne County, I did combat tours with the U.S. Marine Corps in Afghanistan and Iraq. But like the thousands of other vets returning to upstate New York, I was left wondering what to do next. Where could I put my military training to best use? How could I continue giving back to the country that I love?

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This past week, we finally tied back in to the Forest Service, and have to admit that we are glad to be back. We started the week off going back to our old project site, the Carter Road project which the Forest Service is clearing a chain on either side of the road to enable them quick escape routes for areas of suspected high risk fire behavior in the future.

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This week we had some adversity and ended it with great news. We finished the Carter Road Project! A project that was started under the last VFC and worked on most of our time to date is finally done. We are relieved to be through going to that site to pick up sticks and are hoping to get some more throttle time on the chainsaws now that the project is done.

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The past couple of weeks the Veterans Fire Crew has been pretty busy.  Due to the Federal Government shutdown the Veterans Fire Crew were the only fire personnel left on the Prescott National Forest to conduct burn prep.  We completed 3 fire lines for the Ponderosa Park prescribed burn, Mingus Mountain prescribed burn and Granite Mountain prescribed burn.  The crew used chainsaws, leaf blowers, string trimmers, and other hand tools to complete these lines in rugged terrain.  The V

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Upcoming Events

December 20, 2014 |

The National Park Service at Presidents Park along with the National Parks Foundation has asked for SCA’s help this holiday season during their month-long holiday celebration. This year SCA has been asked to assist park rangers at ...

Parents Corner

Your child is about to embark on a life-changing experience, where they will have the opportunity to meet new friends, explore potential careers, gain leadership skills, and accomplish hands-on conservation work that will have a lasting impact on the planet.