‘HERricane Florida’ gives confidence to girls

Published: Jun. 6, 2022 at 8:32 PM CDT
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WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Walton County Emergency Management is all about female empowerment this week.

They’re hosting the second annual “HERricane Florida, Landfall: Walton County Girls Camp” from June 6 - June 10.

“Walton County Emergency Management wanted to start HERricane Landfall Walton County in order to encourage young women, to empower them, to find different ways they can find themselves within the public safety field as well as become a little bit more prepared for either hurricane season or the next disaster that may come,” Operations Coordinator for Walton County Management Catie Feeney said.

It’s the first time the camp has been held since 2019. The pandemic caused it to be cancelled the last two years. This year’s campers are eager to learn new things.

“I want to learn teamwork skills and how to be more confident,” camper Meyshia Kennedy said.

Participants are being exposed to a variety of skills in the emergency services sector. Examples include storm spotter training, drone operations, knowing how to cook during a natural disaster, and more.

“I’ll be giving a public information session today, and then we have a firefighter paramedic coming to help with Fire-EMS,” South Walton Fire District PIO Mackenzie McClintock said. “We’ve got beach safety and life guards coming.”

Management said the main goal is to put more women in leadership roles and to teach them new skills.

“It’s more of a learning opportunity so I’ll know these things in the future,” camper Isabell Smith said.

HERricane Florida is giving these girls the tools to make a difference for women and their communities.

You can visit this website for more information about the program.

Feeney said the camp is fully booked this year but she is looking forward to welcoming new girls in 2023.

The goal is to expand the program.

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