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Goose Creek fire department receives FEMA grant

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The Goose Creek Rural Fire Department was awarded a half-million-dollar grant by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for volunteer recruitment and retention.

Chief Robert Maibach said in a news release that the $552,258.29 grant is critical because of the decline in volunteerism in recent years.

“While this grant will undoubtedly help fill the need for volunteers at our fire department, it will not fix the demand for volunteers at fire stations across our county,” Maibach said. “In nearly 40 years in the fire service, I have never seen a volunteer deficit so great.”

The Goose Creek department needs individuals with a variety of skill sets, including vehicle maintenance, information technology, administrative work and building maintenance.

The department was established in 1959 and comprises paid and volunteer firefighters. It covers unincorporated areas of Berkeley County and Goose Creek, including approximately 5,000 homes, 11 apartment and condominium complexes, five shopping centers, three schools and several industrial facilities.

Fire services in unincorporated Berkeley County are provided through a network of 25 fire departments, which are organized as nonprofit organizations and contracted with the county to provide services to their respective districts.

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