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Kirkland News Room

Kirkland Firefighter Empowers Young Women at Fire Training and Leadership Camp

Margo Freeman
Kirkland Fire Department

girls at camp blaze 2016KIRKLAND, Wash. – From July 23 to July 30, 24 young women from around the country will come together to explore a career in firefighting. They will participate in a leadership camp led by women firefighters like Margo Freeman, a 19-year veteran of the Kirkland Fire Department. Camp Blaze, a nonprofit organization developed by the International Association of Women in Fire and Emergency Services, seeks to “empower, inspire and support strong women leaders” through a free weeklong training program located at the Washington State Fire Training Academy in North Bend. Young women ages 16 to 19 are taught skills ranging from teambuilding and leadership to live-fire response and CPR.

Campers learn from a professional staff of female firefighters and first responders who volunteer their time to teach young women the value of overcoming obstacles. On Tuesday, July 26, campers will spend the day at the Bellevue Fire Training Center located at 1838 116th Ave. NE, Bellevue, WA 98005 where the press is welcome to observe training exercises and fitness tests. (see below for photo opportunities)

Freeman, who will serve as the lead operations chief at Camp Blaze this summer, has experienced firsthand the transformation of the young women in attendance. As a former instructor, she describes the campers as first, “feeling a little tentative and homesick and unsure of what to expect.”

“Throughout the week, they engage in strenuous activities that are both physically and mentally challenging. Through these exercises, these young women not only develop critical life skills and a sense of empowerment, but also lifelong friendships” Freeman said. “By the end of the week, they never want to leave.”

CAMP BLAZE is July 23 - 30, 2016


TUESDAY, JULY 26 TH – 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Rappelling, Aerial Climb and Auto
Extrication, Bellevue Public Safety Training Center, 1838 116th Ave NE, Bellevue

WEDNESDAY, JULY 27 TH – 1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Wildland Fire Training, Washington
State Patrol Training Academy, North Bend

FRIDAY, JULY 29 TH – 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., - Live Fire Training, Washington State
Patrol Training Academy, North Bend

To set up shoots, please Contact: Amina Saleh, Blaze PIO