Don Bliss, a member of NFPA’s Standards Council, past fire marshal for the state of New Hampshire, recently served as the interim fire chief in Somersworth, New Hampshire. More than 1,000 Indonesian immigrants live in Somersworth, and Bliss got involved with the Indonesian community through a Health and Safety Council of Strafford County emergency preparedness grant project for the Indonesians of Somersworth and Stratford County. According to Samantha Brann, Community Programming coordinator for the Health and Safety Council of Strafford County, the grant focused training responders on cultural competency in the Indonesian community, teaching preparedness and fire safety to members of the community in Indonesian.
Chief Bliss contacted NFPA and asked if we could help with fire safety information for the Indonesian community. We responded enthusiastically by adapting our easy-to-read materials on escape planning, cooking safety, electrical safety, and heating safety. I had materials translated, and artist Linda Pierce created illustrations depicting Indonesian people demonstrating the safety messages.
The illustrations and translations were reviewed by people from the community, through the leadership of Pastor Joppy Warren of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Rochester, New Hampshire.
All materials are now available on NFPA’s website. You can get these and materials in other languages to use in your Fire Prevention Week programs or ongoing public education activities. NFPA also shared the materials through the Interfaith Council of Indonesian People and the Regional Planning Network of Strafford County.