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FutureShield providing new support for volunteer fire department training

June 13, 2022  By FFIC Staff

June 13, 2022 – FutureShield is one of 150 recipients of the Desjardin GoodSpark grant. The funds will help to support Ontario volunteer fire department training with XVR.

XVR is a three-dimensional virtual environment (3DVR) that aims to give teams of first responders the freedom to create training scenarios that are most relevant to their learning objectives. The training system helps to reinforce incident command system (ICS) processes at all levels, promotes effective communication flow within the command-and-control environment for both daily incidents and mass scale disasters.

The funding from the GoodSpark grant will support FutureShield’s goal of expanding the reach of XVR virtual reality training to Canadian volunteer fire departments.

In partnership with Kim Nielsen, a retired training officer from Kingston Fire and Rescue, and their service partner, DriveWise Safety, their goal was to collectively develop a cost-effective and accessible training program. Their goal is to give volunteer firefighters access to training that may have previously been out of reach and only accessible to much larger fire departments. The program kicked off in Nielson’s community of Kingston, Ont., for its first two-day training session, which ran from May 30 to June 1.


“It was an exciting moment when this program, in partnership with Kim Nielsen, became a reality and I can’t wait get XVR into the hands of our smaller and volunteer fire departments,” Cynthia Weeden, founder of FutureShield.

“With my recent retirement I’m excited about the opportunity to bring my experience using XVR to local volunteer departments,” said Nielsen. “The partnership with FutureShield and the technology solution they bring to the table will ensure the program is effective, relevant and meets the needs of local Canadian firefighters. I am committed to cost effective training programs for small departments and offer my numerous years of experience to give back.  A program for a small department including XVR will cost $2,000 for two 8-hour days of incident command training including travels costs.”

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