Adult Education Programs
Today one in nine Coloradans is at least 65 years old; by 2030 one in five will be over the age of 65. After a lifetime of living on their own, many baby boomers are moving into isolated communities. The transition isn't easy for them and poses significant challenges for fire inspectors, firefighters and life safety educators as well as for the residents, their families, and community staff. Those challenges increase as residents age in place. Aging Matters is a program that reduces risks faced by this population based on empowerment. Current modules include evacuation leadership, hands-only CPR, fall prevention, home fire prevention, self-lifts after a fall, medical self-awareness, the paperwork of aging, and identity protection.
Community risk reduction requires cultural changes; cultural changes take time. We assume that adults understand how fire burns, which isn't always true, and we assume they understand the risk their home faces, which is true. This presentation provides a primer on fire science, shatters myths surrounding wildfires and addresses psychological barriers to action so that residents of wildfire-prone neighborhoods can create fire-adapted communities. This presentation draws from Project Learning Tree, the U.S. Forest Service FireWorks curriculum and the authority's Ready-Set-Go and Fire-Adapted Community programs.
The South Metro Fire Rescue Authority (SMFRA) now hosts quarterly train-the-trainer workshops that empower property managers, building engineers and lead safety wardens to provide safety warden classes at their own buildings. The workshop covers safe and efficient procedures for preventing, reacting to and recovering from medical emergencies, external threats such as tornadoes, internal threats such as workplace violence, and fires. It includes a component on teaching methodology. Each workshop lasts four hours, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Each workshop includes lunch and entitles attendees to have a CD with educational materials including the foundation for your own PowerPoint.
Emergency Operation Plan Reviews
SMFRA's life safety educators remain available to review the Emergency Operations Plan for a business or organization to ensure it complies with the International Fire Code and best practices. The review also keeps SMFRA's Operations Division updated about facilities and their usage. The review normally takes two weeks. Email an electronic copy of the plan to Life Safety Education to begin the process.