Station pride isn’t something that just happens. It’s in the details; a combination of things that add up to create a feeling within the firehouse. Little things that add a small splash of character really builds a department’s pride as well as your own. For example, a fresh coat of paint takes minimal time and money yet adds aesthetic value.
A custom kitchen table, custom patches, slogans on your rig, and friendly competition with other shifts or stations all add to that pride value. What you get out of the job is what you put into it – the job doesn’t owe you a thing. The happier you are to be there and the more passion you have for what you’re doing will bleed through and really show other brothers and sisters as well as outsiders. You don’t have to be a busy department to have pride! I REPEAT: you DO NOT have to be a busy house to have pride!
While on active duty,I was a member of a rural department in southeastern Virginia. We averaged 500 runs annually yet still took pride in our house and rigs as well as our training. So you have a cool patch, a cocky slogan, and you’re all salty. Where else do you have some fun with the job?
Anybody take pride in their bunk rooms? Some places have live-in firefighters with their own rooms while other places have large bunk rooms. Either way, take some time to add some personal flair to the place you lay your head at night. Pictures of your department’s history, action shots, posters, a disco ball – whatever you want to add some character. I particularly enjoy buying funny sheet sets for my house bag. Every six months or so, we’ll go to the store as a crew and buy ridiculous things to add to the bunk room. Most of us have children’s sheet sets and we never buy the same ones as each other. Again, silly things like this add to the character which adds up to having a station full of pride.
What are some goofy things you do? Share below. -1512
After borrowing ideas from others in the fire service, I came up with my own version of a class called Firehouse Etiquette. I incorporate station pride, but I really need to go back and add more on the subject, although like you said, it’s not something that just happens. You can’t teach it either, although we have try. Some people get it and some don’t. I will take your ideas and incorporate them into a revivision of my presentation. Great article. Keep up the pride.