Ind. Girl Scouts Train with Firefighters for a Day
Apr. 15—The suits may not have fit and the hose may have been a little bit heavy, but that didn't stop a group of Girl Scouts from trying their hand at firefighting on Saturday afternoon.
Fifteen Girl Scouts from different troops around the state traveled to Bloomington to participate in Camp Courage Miss Firefighter, an annual badge program activity held at the Bloomington Fire Department's training tower on South Walnut Street.
Around 30 Daisy and Brownie Scouts participated during the morning session.
"Now this one's all about teamwork. You've really got to work together!" Jean Magrane shouted as groups attempted to snake a hose around several barrels before spraying a junked vehicle.
Magrane is a retired captain from BFD and was the city's first female firefighter, a badge she wears with pride.
"I came on in 1987. I never met another female firefighter for seven or eight years," she said. "I feel like, because of that and rising through the ranks like I did, I still need to be a mentor to girls like them."
Tania Daffron, BFD's battalion chief in training, as well as students from Hoosier Hills Career Center's vocational program and McCordsville and Indianapolis firefighters volunteered their time as instructors. They helped lead the Scouts through an obstacle course and taught the basics of CPR and other life-saving techniques.
"This program is important so that they know what they can do in the future, and that all options are open to them," said Kate Weidner, Girl Scouts of Central Indiana program development manager.
For Sammy Williams and Audrey Cruser, two Girl Scouts from Fishers, training in the tower and trying out gear was a blast, even if they don't plan on becoming professional firefighters. The pair had just finished putting out a simulated fire with a real hose inside BFD's training tower.
"It looked like something I'd want to learn about and try out for myself," Audrey said. "It's pretty intense, dealing with the flames and the dark."
Sammy agreed, saying she had fun but worked harder than she was expecting.
"It takes a lot of work to put out a fire," she said.