Charitable Choices: Brandon Davies of Vancouver Firefighter Charities

Vancouver Firefighter Charities is a local non-profit focused on assisting the community through various programs and initiatives, such as the Snacks for Kids program, which helps to provide food for 65 schools in Vancouver. We spoke with Brandon Davies the Director of Funding for Vancouver Firefighter Charities to learn more.

Vancouver Firefighter Charities

Describe your charity/non-profit/volunteer work in a few sentences.

Vancouver Firefighter Charities (VFC) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting our local community initiatives, helping those in need within the City of Vancouver. Our focus is on fostering community well-being through our various charitable programs such as Snacks for Kids, Toys for Kids, and Lifelines for Seniors, etc.

What problem does it aim to solve?

All of our programs support vulnerable members of the community. Our largest program is our Snacks for Kids program. This program helps supply nutrient-dense snacks to kids in Vancouver Schools. These snacks are given to kids who lack nutrients in their packed lunches. With proper nutrition, we provide the energy kids need to learn and grow.

When did you start/join it?

I started working for the Vancouver Firefighter Charities as a volunteer when I began working for Vancouver Fire Rescue Services in 2015 as a probationary firefighter. It is part of Vancouver Firefighters’ culture to volunteer during their time off-duty to give back to the community. This opportunity to help the people we see daily gives an immense sense of purpose to all our volunteers.

What made you want to get involved?

Volunteering has always been a passion of mine. The fire department was a natural progression from volunteering as a community member to my position now, where I have a larger portfolio and more opportunities to help raise and deliver the funding our programs need. I began getting heavily involved when I volunteered for Fire in Your Kitchen Dinners. This program is a unique dining experience where a team of firefighters cook gourmet meals in your home by donation. It is my personal favourite way to raise funds that support our Snacks for Kids program. In 2023, the program raised an astonishing $260,000.

What was the situation like when you started?

When I started in the charity in 2015, our volunteer teams were established and strong. However, since then, the charity has grown an enormous amount. We have managed to build bigger and better programs while keeping our overhead costs low. This is only possible because of the volume of off-duty firefighters donating their time and efforts daily.

How has it changed since?

“The Snacks for Kids Program” is the largest off-duty firefighter-run program. The Program has grown to support over sixty-five schools and over fifty-five hundred kids annually. Unfortunately, as much as our program has grown, we also see the need for our program growing. We continue to work towards meeting these ever-changing demands, but it is challenging in today’s times.

What more needs to be done?

The VFC is grossely funded by payroll deductions. Over 80% of firefighters opt into automated deductions from their paychecks to donate to the VFC. This funding is incredibly important when budgeting to enable us to support all of our programs. My personal goal is to increase our long-term donors who are able to commit annually to supporting our cause.

How can our readers help?

Support the VFC by engaging on social media and spreading the word of our amazing charitable organization. We are always looking to inspire people in the community to help support our cause by donating on an annual or monthly basis.

Do you have any events coming up?

Our next big event is June 22nd. The Hall of Flame Calendar selection party which takes place annually at The Roxy in Vancouver. This event allows the public to buy tickets and select the firefighters who will be featured in one of our longest-running fundraisers, The Hall of Flame Calendar. The event sold out last year so keep an eye out for tickets going on sale!

Where can we follow you?

Website | Vancouver Firefighter Charities | The Firefighters Calendar

PAY IT FORWARD: What is an awesome local charity that you love?

One of the top organizations we support is The BC Professional Firefighters Burn Fund. This amazing charity is supported by all local fire departments in B.C. and provides support to burn survivors as well as their families. I have personally volunteered for the Burn Camp for Kids, which is a week-long camp that empowers kids and enables them to bond with others who are also burn survivors. I have been fortunate enough to visit VGH’s Burn Unit and see the impact this charity has on burn survivors and their families.


About Sabrina Greggain-Lord 34 Articles
My name is Sabrina Greggain-Lord and I am a Community Outreach worker for the Vancouver Guardian. I am passionate about writing and bringing recognition to those doing wonderful work within their communities.