Glendale Fire facing volunteer shortage for its Crisis Response Team

GLENDALE, Ariz. (FOX 10) -- The Glendale Fire Department is experiencing a shortage of volunteers in its Crisis Response Team, and the fire department is looking for those who are interested in starting off the new year by doing something positive for the community.

The West Valley fire department's spokesperson says right after 911, they saw a huge of people volunteering, over 100. Since then, however, they've seen a huge decline, to about 25 people.

Drownings, deadly fires, or unexpected deaths are some of the toughest calls firefighters respond to. Crisis response volunteers are there on those calls as well, and provide comfort for victims.

"These people really come in, hold their hand, walk them through it, they stay with them as long as they need," said Ashley Losch with Glendale Fire. "They'll make phone calls to family members to notify them of a death. They do the uncomfortable things, and they do it with love and compassion."

These volunteers also respond to domestic violence calls, sexual assault or other incidents.

"It really is an important part of our fire department, and a service that they give to the community," said Losch. "Without it, we don't have that filled gap that we need for our customers."

Glendale Fire is looking for folks who may have experience as a grief counselor, social worker, or someone who's retired and wants to give back. Being bilingual helps as well. At the end of the day, however, the fire department just needs someone who is loving and compassionate.

Glendale Fire Dept. Crisis Response Team