INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Fire Department partnered with Citizens Energy Group Saturday to ‘paint the town teal’ and raise money for a good cause. 

IFD Recruits from the class of 1987 spent the morning cleaning and re-painting Citizens-owned hydrants in the IFD Service District. Assistance was provided by several Citizens’ employees in the Water Distribution area, a press release said, under the supervision of Paul Dicken, Citizens’ Director of Water Distribution.

The event, dubbed “Badges for Burn Camp”, is part of an initiative for IFD Recruit Firefighters to engage in community service beyond their commitment to firefighting. 

“Taking an oath to serve – not only includes firefighting and EMS duties but also giving back to the citizen’s we serve with time and talent,” IFD Chief Ernest Malone said. “We strive to reinforce this culture of service early in a firefighters career and encourage all of our members to continue this outreach during their time on the job.”

The event began at 10:00 am with the staging area at IFD Headquarters located at 955 Ft. Wayne Ave. Citizens provided all of the paint, brushes and supplies needed from their current inventory and comes at no cost to either the department, taxpayers or customers. 

The group had identified 300 hydrants that needed care, and the 55 member class was divided into 26 teams and assigned pre-selected hydrants to complete. Several of the teams were joined along the way by Chief Malone, Training Chief Eric Dreiman and Training Captain Sam Kraeszig who stepped up to help.

The event raises money to send burn survivors to Hoosier Burn Camp. This is the 7th hydrant painting event since the inaugural day in 2015.

The first six efforts have raised $50,000 combined, which has since been donated to Hoosier Burn Camp, on behalf of IFD, through the Citizens Energy partnership. It is unclear yet, how much this year’s donation will be for the IFD recruits efforts. 

The 2022 camp is slated for May 29 and will last until June 3. It takes at Camp Tecumseh in Brookston, Indiana and more information can be found here.

“We are excited about the opportunity to provide IFD with a fundraising mechanism that will ultimately pay the way for a child to attend Hoosier Burn Camp,” said Jeff Willman Citizens vice president of water operations. “At Citizens, we know the importance of home heating safety and fire prevention. That is why it’s imperative that we make sure our hydrants are working properly and highly visible so firefighters can do their jobs effectively.”