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Douglas County Programs

Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month

Living With Fire logo

Firefighters stand near their firetrucks Firefighters teach community members about wildfire during Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month. Photo by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

Collaborative monthlong effort encourages homeowners to reduce the wildfire threat


The wildfire threat to Nevada communities is significant and increasing, with 265,156 acres burned in 2016. Key to reducing this threat is an aware and proactive public who implement the necessary pre-fire activities, those actions that improve house survivability during wildfire. In Nevada, there is a diverse group of entities who have a role in promoting wildfire awareness and assisting in the adoption of pre-fire activities, including homeowners, firefighting organizations, elected officials, schools, Cooperative Extension, landscape management professionals, community leaders and others. Cooperative Extension’s Living With Fire Program established Nevada Wildfire Awareness Week/Month as a means to expand the education program and launch a coordinated, statewide wildfire awareness campaign each year. The efforts are continued throughout the year.

Response/What’s Been Done

Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month began as a weeklong statewide effort in 2005 and expanded in 2014 to the entire month of May. It’s a collaborative effort coordinated by Cooperative Extension’s Living With Fire Program, with participation by program partners including local, state and federal firefighting agencies and many others. Activities are designed to build awareness and encourage homeowners to take action to reduce the wildfire threat. The 2017 message, communicated at events and via a coordinated marketing campaign, was “Wildfire! Prepare. Anticipate. Evacuate.” This emphasized the importance of pre-planning and action for safe, effective evacuation during a wildfire. A total of 9,974 people attended one or more of the 189 events, and marketing efforts extended into all 17 Nevada counties. The program audience includes homeowners living in high-wildfire-threat areas, firefighters who protect those communities and others who provide services to help them prepare for wildfire.

Results/Impact and Partners

In 2017:

  • Eight other states joined Nevada in securing a multi-state proclamation in observance of Wildfire Awareness Month. Living With Fire helped initiate this effort nine years ago.
  • 189 events or activities were held statewide by Cooperative Extension and partnering organizations.
  • 9,974 people attended events.
  • 866,120 indirect contacts were made via newspaper articles, school flyers, social media efforts and other methods of communications.
  • 23 proclamations were issued, including 17 from Nevada counties, two from municipalities, and one from the Nevada League of Cities.
  • 129 households participated in Junk the Junipers events.
  • 258 truckloads of ornamental junipers and other flammable material were collected at Junk the Junipers events.
  • 149 runners participated in the Nevada Wildfire Fire Awareness Multihour Trail Run, which raised $4,400 for the Wildland Firefighter Foundation.
  • Reported in-kind contributions from federal and nonfederal sources totaled $29,909.

179 program partners collaborated on Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month activities, including Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, Nevada Division of Forestry, Sierra Front Wildfire Cooperators, Nevada League of Cities, Bodine’s Casino, CarsonNow, Barrick-Cortez Mine, Winnemucca City Fire Department, Panaca Market, Pioneer Crossing, Battle Mountain Elementary School, North Lyon Fire Protection District, Nevada Cattlemen’s Association, KKOH Radio, Washoe County Emergency Management, Cumulus Media and Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District.

Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month with its many events and activities has served as a template for other states to emulate. For example, the South Dakota Wildland Fire Division started a Junk the Juniper event modeled after Nevada’s. Wildfire Awareness Month messages and graphics have been shared at no cost with other states over the years for adaptation into their own Wildfire Awareness campaigns.



people attended events in 2017


reported in-kind contributions from federal and nonfederal sources in 2017


raised for the Wildland Firefighter Foundation in 2017

“I have been on the Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month planning committee for several years now, and every year it just seems to keep growing with more partners and more events statewide. I’m not aware of any other state having anything quite like it.”

— Rodd Rummel, Carson City Fire Department

Contact: Sonya Sistare, 775-887-2252

Programs Program Information

Green Industry Training Programs of Northern Nevada

Green Industry Training (GIT) and Green Industry Continuing Education Series (GICES) are cost- and time-efficient approaches to serving the Green Industries of northern Nevada, including nursery workers, landscapers, arborists, irrigation and lawn care professionals. The Green Industry Training program begins in late winter with eight three-hour sessions of entry-level training for new industry workers, for those desiring to work in the industry and for existing industry professionals desiring a skills "tune-up." After "basic training," industry members are invited to monthly continuing education opportunities — one hour per month over the noon hour — to hone and improve their skills.

Healthy Eating Active Living: Mapping Attributes using Participatory Photographic Surveys (HEAL MAPPS)

Healthy Eating Active Living: Mapping Attributes using Participatory Photographic Surveys (HEAL MAPPS) is a compilation of evidence-based engagement and assessment tools that is used to audit and map community environmental features that support and/or hinder healthful eating and physical activity among community members. The MAPPS method integrates photography, participatory community mapping using global positioning system (GPS) technology, and residents’ voiced perceptions of their community. HEAL MAPPS engages people in community-based participatory research to document attributes of the rural community environment that are perceived by residents as obesity preventing or promoting and assess the local resources and readiness to implement community-level obesity prevention strategies to prevent unhealthy weight gain/overweight and obesity among children and their families.

Keeping Kids Safe: Recognizing, Reporting, and Responding to Child Maltreatment

Preventing child abuse and neglect is a high priority in Elko County. Child caregivers, youth workers, volunteers and anyone interested in learning what they can do to prevent child abuse and neglect can attend this workshop. Participants learn how to recognize signs and symptoms of child abuse and neglect, understand their reporting requirements and their role in preventing child maltreatment.

Living on the Land: Stewardship for Small Acreages


Living With Fire

Living with Fire is a comprehensive, multi-agency program aimed at teaching homeowners how to live more safely in high wildfire-hazard environments. The program, encompassing research and education, was developed in 1997 as a result of a collaboration between University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE), Nevada’s Agricultural Experiment Station and the Sierra Front Wildfire Cooperators, a group of 12 Nevada and California firefighting agencies.

Master Gardeners in Nevada

Master Gardeners provide free, research-based horticulture information to Nevadans. They are volunteers who learn advanced plant science skills from at least 50 hours of classroom instruction by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE) professionals. After training, Master Gardeners volunteer a minimum of at least 50 hours a year to pass along their newly acquired knowledge through the media, talks and workshops. They answer phone calls, send out informational materials and develop community gardens.

Processing and Marketing of Local Meat Products: A Feasibility Analysis

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE) developed a feasibility study to find ways to improve financial stability for Nevada livestock producers through processing and niche marketing.

Risk Management

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension (UNCE) develops and delivers a comprehensive risk management education program to livestock and forage producers in Nevada.

Statewide Programs *Statewide programs may not be available in all counties

Programs Program Information
4-H Youth Development
Cattlemen’s Update
Food Safety Project
Grow Your Own, Nevada
Herds and Harvest
Invasive Species (Weeds)
Nevada Radon Education Program
Nevada State GEAR UP
Nevada Youth Range Camp
People of the Land
Pesticide Safety Education Program
Riparian and Watershed Assessment and Management
Stronger Economies Together
Weed Prevention and Management