In celebration of our Ottawa First Responders, we’d like to share the stories and experiences of some of our first responder board members, and let you know how you can help.
There is Need - Brenda
Brenda is a Volunteer Fire Fighter and the President of the Ottawa First Responder Foundation
There is Strength - Lorraine
Lorraine is a Paramedic
There is Hope – Brent
Brent is a Police Officer and a Board Member of the Ottawa First Responder Foundation
Did you know?
First responders are much less likely to reach retirement than the average Canadian. This high attrition rate, especially in paramedics, is linked to the mental health demands placed on responders and their families.
PTSD doesn’t harm just first responders who develop it: it can have unintended consequences for their families and co-workers.
About 45% of Canadian first responders have symptoms consistent with at least one mental health disorder.
How can you support first responders?
Say Hi and smile!
Heart Window Campaign – print off or make your own version of our heart logo to stick in the window of your home to show your support for Ottawa First Responders (Click to download PDF)
Ask any first responders you know how they are doing and be an open ear if they need to talk.
When not in isolation, attend or host events in support of first responders and their mental health
How are we supporting first responders?
Our focus is on augmenting the services that already exist for Ottawa First Responders, but also extending that support to retirees, veterans and families of first responders.
Currently, we are:
Forming Peer 2 Peer
Building connection within the three services
Creating clinician network access for mental health support
Planning a physical wellness centre for first responders and their families