The "Brigada" Program
The Brigada program has been supported by Poco a Poco San Pedro since 2016, because we believe that through these young people, change can happen.
Six years ago, the General Director of the Jalisco Firefighters and Civil Protection, Señor J. Trinidad Lopez Rivas, set up a "Brigada" Program (“Brigada Estatal de Proteccion Civil y Bomberos J. Trinidad Lopez Rivas, A.C.”), initially for the town of San Pedro Itzicán and the surrounding villages.
The local volunteer "brigada" leader/coordinator was Anita Torres Guerrero, and she coordinated all the Brigada projects and taught the "Brigada" leaders. The "Brigada" members who are selected as youth leaders, must volunteer to help their community and work and help younger youth. They learn basic fire-fighting techniques, first aid, rescue, and learn other new skills.
Being a "Brigada member" meant that they spend time prior to going to, or after school, or at weekends, performing volunteer work for the Brigada, including visiting and helping in their community. They Brigada members ranged in age from 9 to 26 years of age, and there are currently around 25 "Brigadista leaders" enrolled in the program from San Pedro Itizcán and the outlying villages. Now there are many women now involved in the program.
The "brigada" leaders, both young men and women are trained as local, back-up firefighters - because the local fire brigade would take a long time reaching the town in an emergency.
Sr Trinidad retired in 2018 from the State Brigada, so the training is now done by Anita Torres and the senior Brigadistas.
Being a Brigada member means they help their community, learn leadership skills, take part in community projects, and help at many other local events. They are so proud to wear their uniforms and enjoy the respect and prestige they earn from their volunteer work.
The Brigada leaders train the youth in their areas, and in their neighborhoods.
Women and some men are also involved in the Brigada program. They take part in events or programs, and help in planting trees and clean up programs (collecting garbage), in their community.