Walker Rocks Start Up Challenge Seeks Applicants for Round 2

Rock Spring, GA – Dozens of companies with a household name have been started with a great idea and a little seed money.  If you have a winning concept, the Walker County Chamber of Commerce wants to hear from you.

Round 2 of the Walker Rocks Start Up Challenge kicks off today.  The grant competition returns with another $5,000 in funding to help a recreational, tourism or hospitality related business get started or expand services in Walker County.  “This year, we will also consider other types of businesses, non-profits, civic and community organizations which add to the quality of life and contribute to the cultural vibrancy of the local economy,” said Lacey Wilson, President of the Walker County Chamber.

David Bridges, owner of Battlefield Outdoors, won last year’s contest after he pitched adding a passenger van to his business to transport outdoor enthusiasts to hiking, biking and kayaking destinations in Walker County.  The van was also wrapped with the Walker Rocks logo, creating a mobile billboard to promote tourism in Walker County.

Applications for the Walker Rocks Start Up Challenge, including rules and judging criteria, are available online at WalkerRocks.com.

Schedule:

  • August 14thApplications available
  • September 23rd – Application deadline
  • October 1st – Finalists announced
  • October 17th – Pitch Competition

The $5,000 start-up grant is funded by a partnership between the Walker County Chamber of Commerce and Peach State Federal Credit Union. Grant funds will be distributed in the form of a reimbursement for documented expenses.

Walker Rocks highlights the scenic and stunning destinations available in Walker County for rock climbing, caving, kayaking, hiking, biking and other outdoor adventures. The award winning tourism initiative embraces the county’s environmental assets and invites outdoor enthusiasts to come play.

Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Grant Aids Walker County Firefighters

Chickamauga, GA – The Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation has awarded Walker County Emergency Services (WCES) a grant valued at $14,385. The funds will be used to purchase 21 Seek Thermal Imaging Cameras (TICs) and accessories.

WCES currently has eight TICs in its inventory, but only six are operational and in service. “With 19 fire stations serving an estimated 458 square miles, our current number of TICs does not meet our need to supply every firefighter with this live-saving technological tool,” said Fire Chief Blake Hodge.

The new cameras are smaller and lighter than their older counterparts, and can be attached to a firefighter or their gear. WCES will strategically place TICs at career and volunteer stations throughout the county, as well as Station 8 at Walker State Prison. “The addition of these cameras will improve the safety of our firefighters and improve our ability to locate fire victims and injured firefighters,” added Chief Hodge.

Along with their lifesaving capabilities, thermal imaging cameras can help firefighters search for missing persons, identify fires hidden in the wall of a house and locate hot spots in electrical and mechanical components.

“I’d like to thank Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation for their continued support of public safety organizations. Their contributions improve the services provided by first responders in Walker County and other communities,” said Chief Hodge.

ABOUT FIREHOUSE SUBS PUBLIC SAFETY FOUNDATION
In 2005, the Firehouse Subs founders established the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation with the mission of providing funding, life-saving equipment, and educational opportunities to first-responders and public safety organizations. Through the non-profit 501(c)(3), Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation has granted more than $35 million to hometown heroes in 47 states, Puerto Rico and Canada, including more than $2.3 million in Georgia.  

FM Global Grant Keeps Sparky the Fire Dog Programs in Walker County

Chickamauga, GA – Walker County Emergency Services (WCES) received a $2,700 fire prevention grant today from FM Global, one of the world’s largest commercial property insurers.

Dale Miller, a field engineer with FM Global, presented the award to Fire Marshal Paul Linder, along with other WCES team members.  The grant will fund the purchase of a new Sparky the Fire Dog costume, which will be used at schools and community events to promote fire prevention in Walker County.

“At FM Global, we strongly believe the majority of property damage is preventable, not inevitable,” said Michael Spaziani, assistant vice president – manager of the fire prevention grant program. “Far too often, inadequate budgets prevent those organizations working to prevent fire from being as proactive as they would like to be. With additional financial support, grant recipients are actively helping to improve property risk in the communities they serve.”

Fire continues to be the leading cause of property damage worldwide, which is one reason why FM Global has contributed millions of dollars in fire prevention grants over the past 40 years.

Pictured are: WCES Deputy Chief Nathan Farrow, WCES Fire Chief Blake Hodge, FM Global Field Engineer Dale Miller, WCES Fire Marshal Paul Linder, WCES Fire Educator Suzanna Tingle, WCES Capt. Robert Stephenson, WCES Firefighter James Bass and WCES Administrative Assistant Crystal Woods.

WALKER COUNTY EXPANDS & UPDATES AED PROGRAM

Emergency Services group picture

Rock Spring, GA – Walker County residents just got a little safer. Emergency crews joined forces today to make upgrades to the county’s Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program.

Walker County Emergency Management used a portion of a Georgia Emergency Management grant to replace AED batteries in 23 Walker County Sheriff’s Office patrol cars. Deputies often arrive to the scene of an emergency minutes before fire and EMS crews, because of the geographic challenges of the county.

Roughly 10 cases of cardiac arrest occur in Walker County every month. These devices significantly increase a patient’s chances of survival.

The grant also funded new AED’s for the Local Government Services office, aka the Tags & Taxes building, and the Fire Department Shift Commander’s vehicle. Supplies for these units and AED’s inside the jail were also restocked.

Approximately $16,000 of the grant remains unspent. Emergency Management officials continue to evaluate the county’s future emergency equipment needs.