Welcome / Forum Information => Questions, Problems, Etc. => Topic started by: mtloya on February 13, 2015, 09:46:47 PM

Title: Help PA High School Jr. Firefighters Make it to NYC!
Post by: mtloya on February 13, 2015, 09:46:47 PM
Hello all,

First off, I'd like to apologize if this isn't the correct subforum to post this in, and I'd also like to say that I'm not trying to necessarily advertise, but just to get the word out for our cause.

As you may know, I am a high school student at Highlands High School in southwestern Pennsylvania, but I am also a cadet in the Highlands Emergency Services Alliance (also known as H.E.S.A.). We were the first traditional (as in non-vocational/technical) high school in Pennsylvania to offer a formal fire training program during the school day that includes Hazardous Materials Awareness, Essentials 1, 2, and 3, and other miscellaneous certificates that are recognized by Allegheny County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. During the warmer fall and spring months, we hold practical skills sessions outdoors in conjunction with our indoor skill/knowledge education. The vast majority of the cadets in our program are local junior volunteer firefighters/EMTs or are attempting to become one. (When I say "we" I specifically refer to the Alliance in its entirety) We partake in various field trips throughout the school year, including visiting the Allegheny County 9-1-1 Communications Center and touring the county airport and the Stat MedEvac facilities. This year, our goal is to make it to New York City.

Our trip will include an exclusive tour of the FDNY's training facility, NYC Fire Zone, New York Fire Museum, Ground Zero, the Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island, and perhaps a Mets game all spread out over a weekend in this upcoming April. Now, we do hold annual fundraisers including our Winter Classic (street hockey tournament) and some raffles, but with the price per cadet being around $600 each, many of our cadet's families are unable to provide complete funding for the trip. Because of this, our instructor and my chief at Hilltop Hose - Mike Krzeminski - has taken to the internet for other fundraising attempts. While we're doing all we can in the local community to attempt to raise money, we ask for the assistance from our fellow brothers and sisters in the service nationwide, or anyone that's willing to donate. Mike has established a GoFundMe page which can be found here: ( in order to draw in some additional support.

For more information on the Alliance, please visit the website: (
Here's our site for the hockey tournaments, in case anyone's in our town on the dates: (
And finally, here is our Twitter page in case anyone is interested in following our training progress: (

I really do encourage all to check out at least our organization's website and see the great things we're doing in my community. It truly is a unique opportunity to have regular training during the work week at school, alongside in-house training.

Any contribution would absolutely move us forward, and I'd like to speak for all the cadets and Mike when I say that I thank everyone that would or did donate.

Thanks for reading,

Mark Loya
Hilltop Hose Co. #3

Update as per 3/23/15:
I would like to thank everyone and anyone that might have donated. Due to yours and others' kind actions, the payments for those that are attending the trip are completely paid off.