The Florida RV Trade Association (FRVTA) presented Hoods for Heroes with a special check during its annual RV Mega Show on Feb. 9, at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center. FRVTA donated a portion of its revenues from the event, along with a donation from the members of the FRVTA Region 6/NE Florida RV Dealers, Campgrounds, & Suppliers.
FRVTA, a nonprofit organization that represents more than 500 RV dealers, campgrounds, manufacturers and related businesses in 10 northeast Florida counties, holds shows throughout the state and attracts more than 100,000 people each year who are interested in learning more about the RV lifestyle. Each regional chapter holds monthly meetings, as well.
Nonprofit Hoods For Heroes is committed to “extinguishing firefighter cancer” by raising funds to provide chemical-blocking hoods that protect firefighters. The hoods protect the firefighters’ head and neck areas, which have thin skin that is most likely to be affected by cancer-causing chemicals emitted by fire and smoke.
This is the first time FRVTA has donated a portion of the admissions from the show to support a nonprofit, according to Hoods for Heroes CEO Jeff Rountree. “We are excited and grateful for the support of FRVTA, especially because this is something new for them,” Rountree said. “We are looking forward to a great partnership and to helping more firefighters reduce their risk of cancer.”
A Firefighter’s risk for specific types of cancer is significantly higher. The National Institute of Science and Health (NIOSH) reports that Firefighters are 2.02 times higher risk for testicular cancer and 1.53 times at greater risk for multiple myeloma. It is reported that as many as one in three Firefighters will be diagnosed with cancer during their careers with current statistics indicating close to 70% of line of duty deaths are due to cancer.
Students from Middleburg High School’s HOSA-Future Health Professionals Club volunteered at the RV Mega Show to assist Hoods for Heroes. The students shared information about the Adopt-A-Firefighter program, which they launched in partnership with Hoods for Heroes. The goal of the program is to enlist high school students in the effort to raise funds to pay for cancer-preventing hoods for firefighters.
HOSA is an international student organization created to promote career opportunities for students in the health care industry. Middleburg High School HOSA students recently volunteered to assist Hoods for Heroes at a firefighter competition in Daytona Beach, Fla.