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FutureShield Announces Volunteer Fire Department Training Program with Funding Support Through Desjardin’s GoodSpark Grant


FutureShield Inc. is thrilled to announced that we have won the Desjardin GoodSpark Grant and will be using these funds to help support Ontario volunteer fire department training with XVR. Desjardins received more than 6,000 applications for the GoodSpark grants from across Canada and FutureShield is proud to be among the 150 winners.

FutureShield recognizes the importance of first responders on the front lines of emergency response, and knows they need the best training tools to prepare. XVR is a three-dimensional virtual environment (3DVR) that gives teams of first responders unparalleled freedom to create training scenarios that are most relevant to their learning objectives. This serious training system reinforces 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, Fire Fighter, Company Officer, Training Officer (Retired) National Defence Fire Services and Training Officer(retired) with Kingston Fire as well as our service partner, DriveWise Safety, we will collectively develop a cost-effective and accessible training program. Our 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 will kick off in Kim Nielson’s community of Kingston, Ontario, with the first 2-day training session running May 30 to June 1. 

We are happy to announce that we will be offering a virtual training session using the XVR 3D Incident Command virtual program in the upcoming OFC NFPA 1021 Company officer course taking place in Kingston Ontario.  Training our future officers in incident command techniques and processes can be challenging due to time, realism and costs.  We are very grateful to the FutureShield / DriveWise Safety team, as well as Kim Nielsen.  We send out sincere thanks to Desjardins for providing funding to make this possible.

“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.  “I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Desjardins and am looking forward to the impact this funding will have on the safety of local communities and Ontario fire departments, and throughout Canada in the future.”

“With my recent retirement I’m excited about the opportunity to bring my experience using XVR to local volunteer departments,” Kim Nielsen, retired training officer from Kingston Fire. “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 Fire Fighters. Cynthia never mentioned that they had applied for this grant and it truly felt like Christmas came early with the news arriving on the day of my retirement.  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 $2,000.00 for 2 – 8 hour days of incident command training including travels costs.”

Lesley de Repentigny, President and CEO of DriveWise Safety, stated “our services team is pleased support this amazing program and help develop the 3 days of XVR scenarios and ensure that our smallest local fire departments have world class training at a fraction of the cost.”

For more information on the program please contact FutureShield at [email protected] or visit us at the DriveWise booth at the OAFC conference May 5 – 7th, Booth 1731 where XVR will be demonstrated. Lesley, along with Cynthia, Kim and the entire team look forward to meeting you.


FutureShield Inc. is based in Caledon, Ontario and was founded in 2005 to provide expertise in integrating software solutions for security, emergency management, and critical infrastructure protection. For more information, visit

DriveWise Safety

DriveWise, a division of Knowledge Surge Learning Solutions Inc, was established in 2004 with one mandate: to provide high quality, advanced learning solutions to the Road Transportation industry.

Since our inception, DriveWise has risen to a position of market leadership based on strong performance which has resulted in a rapidly expanding reputation for excellence. DriveWise Safety is a privately owned Canadian company headquartered in Barrie Ontario.

Kim Nielsen

Kim Nielsen has an impressive career in fire fighting with 40+ years of real-world experience during his time with National Defence Fire Services, TaskForce Afghanistan and Kingston Fire and Rescue. His extensive training roles with Kingston Fire and Rescue and Canadian Forces Fire Academy, are just a few examples of his extensive experience. Recently retired Kim has chosen to give back to communities and is passionate about helping volunteer Fire Departments get access to world class training.

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