Public Relations club pairs with Cookeville Fire Department to install smoke alarms

The Tennessee Tech Public Relations Club is teaming up with the Cookeville Fire Department and American Red Cross to organize a home smoke alarm installation event April 30 for local neighborhoods.

Casey Hill, American Red Cross disaster program manager, described the ongoing relationship between American Red Cross and the Fire Department.

“Across Tennessee, The Red Cross builds relationships with fire departments to install smoke alarms in homes, so the relationship has been there, but we’ve been looking to do a program in Cookeville for a while. One of our volunteers, Lauren Henley, pitched the idea to team up with her communication department and their Public Relations Club to get it going,” said Hill.

Lauren Henley, a senior communication major at Tech, has been volunteering at American Red Cross since January.

“I knew the PR Club adopted an event every spring, so I asked them if the smoke alarm installation would be something they would be interested in,” said Henley.

Gabriella Farley, a member of the Public Relations Club, knew the members would be interested in this event.

“With the PR Club being smaller than most clubs, this is an amazing opportunity we have to get our name out there as well as helping out the community,” said Farley.

On Saturday, April 30, volunteers and firefighters will go door to door to ask residents if they want a new smoke alarm installed or a checkup on their current smoke alarm.

While Hill does not know exactly what neighborhoods the firefighters plan on visiting, he does know the characteristics of the neighborhoods.

“The fire department plans on targeting high risk areas, like mobile home communities, elderly communities and neighborhoods that have been struck by fatal fires in the past,” said Hill.

The team plans on having 200 to 300 smoke alarms on hand, and they will visit homes until they run out of detectors.

“We will be installing more than one smoke alarms in each home. There should be one in every bedroom, in each hallway and the kitchen,” said Henley.

No more volunteers are needed for this particular event, but there are opportunities to volunteer with the American Red Cross throughout the year.