WINSTON-SALEM — Ararat Volunteer Fire Department is the recipient of more than $22,000 worth of equipment thanks to Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.
A special event was last week at the Firehouse Subs on South Stratford Road, Winston-Salem, to show off the new equipment.
The local fire department received a thermal imaging camera, flashlights, vent saw, telescoping scene lights, tool sets, gated appliances, life safety rope, canvas salvage covers and forestry hose. The donated items will improve the safety of the firefighters during life-threatening operations, noted a release on the presentation.
Ararat VFD Chief Wes Key said he learned of the foundation’s program through one of Ararat’s members who works for LifeStar and eats there frequently.
“We downloaded an application, and we explained to them that they are not in our county, but we are nearby. They told us it was there to help anyone,” Key said. “It was an up-to-$20,000 grant. I applied for $22,000 we weren’t able to get in matching grants from the state, and they awarded the whole thing.”
He said Firehouse has been great to work with. The foundation sent an acceptance letter via email and then sent the department a check. “We sent the receipts to them, and they didn’t question anything.”
Key and several members of his department traveled to Firehouse Subs with Engine 1 and the department’s suburban, carrying a good deal of the new equipment received through the grant money with them.
“They have been absolutely great to work with,” Key said of Firehouse Subs and its foundation.
In attendance at the special event were franchisee Mark Whitley, area representative of Firehouse Subs Tim Goss and foundation coordinator Jacquelyn Gubbins.
Also received was more than $7,400 in donations by East Bend Volunteer Fire Department, which purchased a Res-Q-Jack stabilization kit to assist on vehicle accidents.
In 2005, Firehouse Subs, which was founded by former firefighters and brothers Chris and Robin Sorensen, created the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation with the mission of providing funding, life-saving equipment and education opportunities to first responders. Through the nonprofit foundation, Firehouse Subs has given $5.7 million to hometown heroes in 36 states and Puerto Rico, including more than $436,700 in North Carolina.
To help raise funds for the foundation, each restaurant recycles leftover five-gallon pickle buckets and sells them to guests for $2. Donation canisters on register counters explain the nonprofit’s mission and collect spare change, while the Round Up Program allows guests to “round up” their bill to the nearest dollar. All funds through these efforts benefit the foundation.
Now through Feb. 10, Firehouse Subs is donating $1 to the foundation for every photo of a pickle bucket posted to Instagram, the Firehouse Subs Facebook page, Twitter or Pinterest with #BucketsSaveLives to help first responders get the equipment they need to protect and save lives.
Reach Wendy Byerly Wood at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1923.