New autism program
The North Stormont Fire Services will introduce a new autism awareness program at its open house at Station 1 in Finch April 27.
At the event being held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Chief Dan Gauvin and firefighters will greet members of the public. At 11:30 a.m., mascot Sparky and his good friend Marshall from Paw Patrol will be helping Chief Gauvin, Deputy Chief Derek Hoar, Senior Captain Steve Tait and Fire Prevention Officer Nancy Ann Gauthier present the Autism and Special Needs Fire Prevention and Response Awareness initiative.
“It is our goal to equip our firefighters to respond with the greatest level of support and dignity when they encounter an opportunity to help someone with autism or special needs. We want to understand challenges faced by families and how that impacts their interactions with first responders. We are committed to help families prepare for emergencies and potential interactions with firefighters,” says the department.
Upon request, FPO Gauthier will be available to schedule one-onone time with Sparky and Marshall to facilitate a positive interaction. Hot dogs will be served for lunch. Chief Gauvin said, “Open houses give families and businesses the chance to meet their local firefighters and tour the station that serves their homes and properties.”
Prizes will be drawn at the end of the day.