Adopt-A-Road sign up, boot drive to be held next month

Published on Thu, Jul 3, 2003 by Shanna Green

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Adopt-A-Road sign up, boot drive to be held next month

By Shanna Green

In an effort to give back to the community, the North Whatcom Professional Firefighters union 3867 in Birch Bay adopted the road in front of their department last year. Although the union has been maintaining the stretch of the Birch Bay-Lynden road for more than a year now, their sponsorship sign was just recently posted.

�For such a small section of road it has a lot of trash,� said union president Ray Davidson, adding that firefighters picked up more than 70 pounds of garbage during their most recent cleanup in May.

When a group adopts a road, they are required to maintain that road by doing a full cleanup twice a year, Davidson said. But union members of the fire department have vowed to clean-up the road quarterly. Their first clean-up was in June of 2002.

Davidson said that group activities like this help to bring the union members together. �We have a very tight union,� Davidson said. �It�s very positive.�

The roadside cleanup is not the only way the department has gotten involved with the community.

�We put a lot of money out to other programs,� Davidson said. Once a year, the union uses $275 from union dues to sponsor an underprivileged child to attend camp.

Davidson said the union also donates a $500 scholarship every year to someone who is going into community services such as fire fighting, nursing or law enforcement.

The fire department also sells calendars to raise money for burn victims, and as part of the International Association of Firefighter�s partnership with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the department will be participating in the Fill the Boot Drive. This is the first year the department has been part of the drive, where firefighters stand in the street with their empty boots for passersby to fill with donations. The drive will be on Saturday, July 19 and the firefighters will be at the intersection of Birch Bay-Lynden and Harborview roads.