It’s a big deal to be one of a dozen firefighters in the province to grace a month in the Jim Pattison Childrens Hospital Firefighter Calendar. Wakaw/Hoodoo firefighter Cullen Giesbrecht broke into those ranks and he couldn’t be happier about it.
Cullen is a paramedic responder who has taken firefighter training and hopes to make it his full time occupation in the future. That doesn’t mean his volunteer, on-call status means it’s any lighter a load for him or any of the crew in his unit.
“We respond to quite a few calls a year, and people underestimate how much we respond to,” admitted Giesbrecht. “We just finished fighting a fire for three days straight on the weekend and had six other calls to respond to within a span of three days.”
His focus shifted from busy firefighting duties to the chance to be one of those selected for this year’s Firefighters Calendar, a chance he relishes. He talked about the process that got him there.
“You have to put in an application and they have to review them all. They’ll take 16 firefighters out of the review process, and then they’ll name them the finalists.”
This year, those finalists headed to Regina for an evening extravaganza at Casino Regina.
“They had a record attendance with over 500 people in the crowd. They set a record this year for online voting; we were overwhelmed with all the online support we had this year. It was amazing.”
Giesbrecht was overwhelmed with the amount of support and the number of online votes he received, but in his generous fashion, he expressed his gratitude for the overall support the Calendar project received on all fronts. Since all proceeds go to benefit the Jim Pattison Childrens Hospital in Saskatoon, he roots for anyone who helps to up the profile of the endeavour and raise the dollar ante.
“I want to thank everybody for their support for me. This money is going to a great cause and I’m very excited to help out with this.”
Calendars go on sale this fall and are available at saskfirefighterscalendar.com or through any one of the firefighters appearing in this year’s calendar. You can get in touch with Cullen to order yours through the Wakaw/Hoodoo Fire and Rescue Facebook page.