State Farm reps present gift to MU FRTIState Farm representatives visit MU FRTI and view the Institute’s Mobile Vehicle Firefighting prop as part of the Good Neighbor Citizenship Grant presented to the University of Missouri. Pictured from left to right: State Farm Agency Sales Leader Ryan Kenney and Columbia, MO, State Farm Agents Stephanie Wilmsmeyer, Brian Hazelrigg, Greg Hill, DJ Hinds, Phyllis Nichols, Meera Patel White, Justin Hahn, Cheryl Kelly, Dale Parker, and Lisa Cravens.

The University of Missouri Extension, on behalf of the University of Missouri Fire & Rescue Training Institute (MU FRTI), recently received a 2017 State Farm Good Neighbor Citizenship Grant. The State Farm gift to MU FRTI will support specialized training for Missouri emergency responders to highway incidents. Through this training the first responder will gain additional competency in the quick stabilization and removal of accident victims thus improving patient survival, while safely managing the incident scene and preventing additional accidents and injuries. The grant also provides funding for training on vehicle firefighting. Vehicle fires in Missouri are a growing concern as 2015 data indicated that Missouri firefighters responded to over 2,400 vehicle fires.

Director Hedrick acknowledged the importance of the funding support for training by saying, “This training project, supported by State Farm, will improve the on-scene capabilities and safety of the firefighters as well as the citizens they serve.” The funding provided to MU FRTI, is part of a larger overall gift to the University of Missouri intended to support a variety of University educational initiatives.

The Good Neighbor Citizenship Grants provided by State Farm Companies Foundation® and State Farm® help build safer, stronger and better educated communities across the United States. The grants focus on three areas: safety, education, and community development.

Missouri’s 6 million citizens are served by an estimated 29,000 firefighters of which approximately 72% are volunteers. Fire and emergency responders in Missouri are called to the scene of approximately 127 highway related incidents per day. Emergency responders have the opportunity to reduce the severity of the incidents and prevent further highway fatalities and injuries when effectively educated through these types of training programs.

MU FRTI is a unit of MU Extension and is charged with the responsibility of providing comprehensive continuing professional education training to Missouri’s fire service and emergency response personnel. The Institute provides training to approximately 13,000 fire and emergency service first responders each year.