Check out the latest training opportunities

OAPFF Peer Support Webinar Series: Making a Difference

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Training Date: Monday, March 15, 2021 - 1:00pm

WHEN REGISTRATION IS CONFIRMED YOU WILL BE EMAILED ZOOM LINK!

OAPFF Peer Support Webinar Series: Making a Difference

Traumatic events can impact anyone; first responders are no exception. Those who can recover the fastest have support, develop awareness, and seek appropriate resources when indicated.

Sometimes, a personal success story is enough to inspire change.

Join the OAPFF Peer Support team on Monday, March 15th at 1:00 pm as we welcome two special guests: Dr. Kenneth Yeager and Firefighter/Paramedic Justin Ward.

Dr. Yeager will discuss the impact of psychological trauma and the success of the Stress, Trauma & Resilience (STAR) Program located at OSU’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health. Akron Fire/medic Justin Ward will share a personal and impactful account of his recovery path.

Kenneth Yeager, Ph.D., LISW-S, LICDC

Program Director of the Stress, Trauma & Resilience (STAR) Program

Associate Professor of Psychiatry, the Ohio State University

Dr. Yeager has also contributed to the OAPFF Behavioral Health program and Peer Group Support training. He is uniquely dedicated to first responders’ mental well-being, having both a son as a police officer and a nephew as a fire captain.

Justin Ward has been a firefighter/paramedic for the City of Akron Fire Department for the past seven years. In addition to performing his duties as an active member on the line, he has participated in various department programs and initiatives, such as the Quick Reaction Team, Peer Support, and the Human Relations Committee.

Information about OAPFF Peer Support can be found at www.firefightermentalhealth.org

The site offers additional resources and contact information for our trained peer support providers.

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

Treating Fire Service Professionals: Building Cultural Competency

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Training Date: Thursday, March 25, 2021 - 12:00pm

The purpose of this training is to help clinicians and other community partners develop cultural competency in the fire service as to be best equipped to provide effective behavioral health services to fire fighters, paramedics and emergency dispatchers.

This event will include information about day-to-day life at the fire house and the potential impact of aspects of the job on well-being, such as exposure to trauma, shift schedules, and mental health stigmas. This presentation will provide insight into the most common behavioral health issues experienced by fire service members, substance abuse trends among this unique population, and treatment techniques that have proved successful at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence.

Completing this training will establish clinicians as preferred providers in the IAFF Center of Excellence database for outpatient and aftercare referrals, as to provide a continuation of care for clients with providers who understand the intricacies of the fire service.

The International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery is a one-of-a-kind treatment facility specializing in addiction, substance abuse, PTSD, and other related behavioral health challenges exclusively for professional fire fighters, paramedics, and dispatchers. It is a safe haven for IAFF members to work with other fire service professionals who have faced or overcome similar challenges and has treated more than 1,500 clients from every U.S. state and 3 Canadian provinces.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

About the presenter: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery.

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

Utilizing EMDR When Working With Fire Service Members

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Training Date: Thursday, March 18, 2021 - 12:00pm

Molly Jones, LSW and Ari Brooks, LCSW will provide an overview of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy and discuss why this modality is useful when treating fire service members experiencing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and related symptoms.

Attendees will gain a greater understanding of EMDR therapy, how it works and why it is an effective modality in treating trauma experienced by fire service members. This webinar is appropriate for fire service members, treatment providers, family members, spouses, or anyone who is curious to learn more about EMDR.

This training will also include stories and video(s) from real-life fire scenes to facilitate learning and increase insight into how the fire service occupation may put members at risk for exposure to potentially traumatic events.
 
**Disclaimer: Participation in this webinar will not prepare treatment providers to utilize EMDR in their clinical work or implement aspects of EMDR into the treatment of clients. Treatment providers who are interested in becoming trained and certified in EMDR, should visit the EMDRIA website (www.EMDRIA.org) to find out more information about upcoming trainings.  

About the presenters: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery.

Ari Brooks, LCSW is the Mental Health Director at the Emergency Responders Health Center in Boise, ID and specializes in treating anxiety, depression, and trauma among first responders. Ari is an EMDR trained and certified clinician who has utilized EMDR when treating many of her first responder clients, as well as other trauma survivors.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

Grief and the Fire Service

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Training Date: Thursday, March 4, 2021 - 12:00pm

This training will discuss the basics of grief and provide attendees with a greater understanding of the grieving process, applicable to the loss experienced by fire service members and civilians alike.

The presenters will define and discuss the different types of loss, identify the six components of grief and discuss factors that influence how grief is experienced. Attendees will learn about the universal feelings of grief and the utilization of appropriate grief language.

This training will also discuss the ways in which fire service members experience sudden death, anticipated death, and traumatic loss. Through participation in this webinar, attendees will be better prepared to address their own needs related to grief and also learn how to best support their peers and loved ones who may be grieving.

About the presenters: IAFF Center of Excellence Clinical Outreach Coordinator, Molly Jones, LSW will be joined by grief expert, Joanne Steen, MS, NCC.

Joanne has more than 25 years of experience as an instructor and author on grief, stress, and resilience, with a specialty in the line-of-duty loss. Joanne is the founder of Grief Solutions, a Virginia-based training company that provides practical training and resources on grief to leaders, assistance providers, and those who have lost someone. She has worked with more than 40 diverse organizations, including the U.S. Department of Defense and the Canadian Military Forces.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

Reducing the Stigma of Mental and Emotional Health Issues

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Training Date: Wednesday, February 17, 2021 - 3:30pm

FREE WEBINAR

Presented by Cleveland Heights, Ohio Fire Chief, Dave Freeman, who will discuss post-traumatic stress and how it can impact those who are exposed to abnormal situations including disaster, injury, or death.This is done through a sharing of studies, resources, and his personal story of recovery.  Chief Freeman will share options to prevent/lessen the impacts of events and define when to seek help.  An emphasis is placed on the need to reduce the stigma of seeking help for mental/emotional health issues within our culture.

Follow the training website link and enter course code #1095277 for free registration.

 

Training Document: PDF icon flyer utah.pdf

Healthy Relationship Building and Maintenance for Fire Service Couples

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Training Date: Thursday, February 25, 2021 - 12:00pm

This webinar will focus on best practices for building and maintaining healthy relationships between fire service members and their partners, with a focus on effective communication, respect, affection and empathy.

We will also address common stressors within the fire service occupation and the impact this may have on a member’s relationship with his or her significant other. Attendees will learn strategies for improving and strengthening relationships within their lives, gain a greater understanding of the characteristics of a healthy relationship and methods for changing unhelpful patterns with their partners or families.

Fire service partners, spouses, significant others and family members are encouraged to attend.

About the presenter: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery. Jasmyne Kettwick MAMFT, LMFT, RPT, CSST is the founder and Executive Director of Relate Family Therapy in Centennial, Colorado.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.


 

Fire Family Dynamics: Promoting Healthy Home Lives

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Training Date: Thursday, February 18, 2021 - 12:00pm

This training will identify and discuss strategies fire service members and their families can implement to promote positive family dynamics or the patterns of relating between one another.

All families are different, with unique experiences, intricacies and stressors, but there are many common themes, especially among those with members employed within the fire services. During this webinar, we will discuss patterns seen among fire service families, providing attendees with a greater understanding of how these may develop and identify their own family’s strengths and areas for improvement.

Attendees will gain insight into the fire service culture, how family systems and patterns may be impacted by work in the fire service, and best practices for increasing healthier dynamics.


About the presenters: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery. Mike Wells is a 15-year veteran fire fighter and the Peer Support Coordinator for IAFF Local 1619 Prince George's County, Maryland.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.
 

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

Navigating the Behavioral Healthcare System: What Fire Service Members Need to Know

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Training Date: Thursday, February 11, 2021 - 12:00pm

This webinar is intended to help fire service members better understand and navigate the behavioral health care system. Presenter Molly Jones, LSW will discuss how to identify an acute emergency crisis in oneself and/or a peer, explore various levels of behavioral health care treatment and review the most common licenses and qualifications of behavioral health treatment providers.

Webinar attendees will be better equipped to identify and utilize behavioral health treatment resources, as well as gain a greater understanding of what to expect when accessing and engaging in treatment. The training will provide insight into behavioral health assessments, treatment planning, and frequently used treatment modalities and approaches for fire service clients.

This presentation will also introduce attendees to the IAFF Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery, which specializes in the treatment of post-traumatic stress, substance use disorders, and other related mental health issues among fire service members. The IAFF Center of Excellence is the only treatment center in North America that exclusively treats fire fighters, paramedics, and dispatchers.


About the presenter: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.
 

Click on Training Website Link for free registration.

When You are Married to Trauma; A Real Look at the Partners of First Responders

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Training Date: Tuesday, May 4, 2021 - 6:30pm

WEBINAR

They see things differently than most, and we know it. We know what chair in the restaurant they want to sit in, we know they do not want to talk about their day because unlike our day, it was cold, it was dirty, and most likely, it was physically and emotionally draining. Join us in this private webinar as the partner of a fireman and a policeman discuss the impact trauma has on one’s marriage and the ways some get through those tough days.

May 4, 2021
Time: 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Host: Dana Zedak, L.S.W, & Leanne Graham, MA, CA
Participants: Must be in a current relationship with a first responder

Click on Training Website Link for registration.

Managing Stress in 2021: Strategies for Success

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RECORDED WEBINAR from January 21, 2021

https://www.iaffrecoverycenter.com/continuing-education/stress-management-strategies/

2020 was a stressful year for many, particularly members of the fire service and other frontline workers. As 2021 gets underway, this webinar will focus on managing stress and how behavioral health is impacted by potential stressors, on and off the job.

This training will navigate the correlation between increased stress and decreased mental well-being and also highlight strategies to reduce such stress and increase relaxation to benefit holistic wellness on a daily basis. Mindfulness and methods for implementation will be one of the highlighted tools.

Participation in this webinar will provide attendees with increased insight on the importance of addressing accumulated stress and implementing healthy habits to mitigate increased risk of behavioral health issues such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress.

About the presenter: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.
 

IAFF online: The Safety Planning Intervention for Suicide Prevention

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Continue your education as a peer supporter by completing the new IAFF Safety Planning Intervention for Suicide Prevention training, available online at no cost. 

The IAFF partnered with experts at Duke University School of Medicine to create this new online training to help equip peer supporters with essential tools to support fire fighters who are at risk. The training includes:

  • How to conduct the Safety Planning Intervention with fire fighters who have made a suicide attempt, reported thinking about suicide, or who otherwise may be at risk of suicide. 
  • How to help fire fighters recognize they are experiencing a suicidal crisis. 
  • How to develop a prioritized list of tools fire fighters can use to keep themselves safe. This Safety Plan serves as an emergency plan or standard operating guide (SOG) to avert a crisis and prevent the fire fighter from acting on suicidal thoughts or urges.

Students must first successfully complete the online Behavioral Health Awareness course and the IAFF Peer Support training as prerequisites to the Safety Planning Intervention for Suicide Prevention training. 

For more information, including instructions for how to access the course, visit the Advanced Peer Support training webpage.

Looking Back, Looking Ahead: Overview of 2020 Education and What’s to Come in 2021

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RECORDED WEBINAR FROM December 17, 2020

Led by Molly Jones, LSW

As we move towards a new year, the IAFF Center of Excellence team will highlight behavioral health education offered in 2020 and review key takeaways from training on several topics.
This webinar will review the most common behavioral health challenges experienced by fire service members, including warning signs to look for and the types of treatments considered most effective in managing these issues. Best practices in work-life balance and stress reduction will be covered, highlighting strategies offered by professional fire service members and IAFF leaders in their own lives. 
We will discuss the role of peer support in the fire service and how colleagues, union leadership, family members, and friends can best support fire service members in pursuit of behavioral health treatment or resources.
Lastly, in preparation for 2021, we will highlight future training opportunities and further behavioral health education initiatives for fire service members.

About the presenter: Molly Jones, LSW is the Clinical Outreach Coordinator at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

FOLLOW TRAINING WEBSITE LINK FOR VIEWING.

Treating Fire Service Professionals: Building Cultural Competency for Clinicians

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RECORDED WEBINAR FROM December 10, 2020

Led by Molly Jones, LSW

The purpose of this training is to help clinicians and other community partners develop cultural competency in the fire service, as to be best equipped to provide effective behavioral health services to fire fighters, paramedics and emergency dispatchers. The event will include information about day-to-day life at the fire house and the potential impact of aspects of the job on well-being (i.e. exposure to trauma, shift schedules, mental health stigmas). This presentation will provide insight into the most “common" behavioral health issues experienced by fire service members, substance abuse trends among this unique population of professionals, and treatment techniques that have proved successful at the International Association of Fire Fighters Center of Excellence. Completing this training will establish clinicians as “preferred providers” in the IAFF Center of Excellence database for aftercare referrals, as to provide a continuation of care for clients with providers who understand the intricacies of the fire service.

The International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery is a one-of-a-kind treatment facility specializing in addiction, substance abuse, PTSD and other related behavioral health challenges exclusively for professional fire fighters, paramedics, and dispatchers. It is a safe haven for IAFF members to work with other fire service professionals who have faced or overcome similar challenges and has treated more than 1,400 clients from every U.S. state and 3 Canadian provinces. The IAFF Center of Excellence is the only treatment facility in North America that is exclusive to fire service professionals and has provided the unique opportunity to develop research on behavioral health matters among a single occupational group.

The IAFF COE is in the process of becoming a CE provider through the National Board for Certified Counselors. Updates will be made as available.

FOLLOW TRAINING WEBSITE LINK FOR VIEWING.

Navigating Behavioral Health Insurance Coverage for IAFF Members

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RECORDED WEBINAR FROM December 2, 2020

Speakers: Jim Tate, IAFF Healthcare Advisor, L0440 Fort Worth President Emeritus & IAFF Center of Excellence Outreach Directors

This training will introduce IAFF members and affiliate leaders to important considerations for health insurance coverage, with a focus on behavioral health services. Not all health care plans are built the same— do you know what yours covers? Are you prepared to help a member in crisis? IAFF Healthcare Advisor and Fort Worth Local 440 President Emeritus Jim Tate, will share insight on evaluating health care plan options and negotiating comprehensive coverage for members. Special consideration will be given to common pitfalls found in behavioral health coverage, such as a lack of access to services for post-traumatic stress and substance use disorders.

This presentation will also walk attendees through how to verify that their specific benefits plan covers the unique treatment options available through the IAFF.

FOLLOW TRAINING WEBSITE LINK FOR VIEWING.

 

 

Help Starts at Home: Fire Service Families and Behavioral Health

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RECORDED WEBINAR FROM NOVEMBER 2, 2020.

Led by Molly Jones, LSW, Dawn Roy, LCSW & Theresa Snow, Local 1271 Surrey

This training will provide spouses, family members, and other loved one's insight into behavioral health issues among fire service members and strategies for navigating them successfully. First responders themselves may also find this information an insightful examination of the family dynamic and can benefit from a discussion of best practices for communication among spouses and other family members.

This webinar will be hosted by IAFF Center of Excellence Clinical Outreach Coordinator, Molly Jones, LSW. She will be joined by Dawn Roy, LCSW, of Stanford, Connecticut, and Theresa Snow, fire fighter/paramedic of Surrey, British Columbia.

Dawn is an outpatient clinician specializing in treating first responders, a founding member of the Fairfield County (CT) Trauma Response Network, a mother of two, and the wife of a captain within the local fire department. Theresa is an 18-year firefighter/paramedic and an IAFF Master Peer Support Instructor, as well as a CISM and peer team member for the Surrey Fire Department. She is the mother of a 12-year old daughter and the wife of a fellow fire fighter/paramedic.

Dawn and Theresa will each share perspective on their experience as fire fighter spouses, strategies for managing occupational stressors at home, and discuss how family members can develop an awareness of the signs and symptoms related to the most commonly experienced behavioral health issues among fire service members.

CLICK ON TRAINING WEBSITE LINK FOR VIEWING.

SAMHSA Creating Safe Scenes Training Course

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This free online course helps first responders assist individuals in crisis with mental illness or substance use disorder using safe, positive approaches.


Creating Safe Scenes is a free, Commission on Accreditation for Pre-Hospital Continuing Education (CAPCE)- accredited, online training course that helps first responders—police, fire, and emergency medical services—work with individuals experiencing a mental health and/or substance use crisis.

This course is designed to help first responders understand more about mental health, mental illness, and substance use disorders so they can better assess risks and apply the safest strategies for taking care of themselves and the individuals they are called to serve.

Creating Safe Scenes—which includes first-hand video accounts from responders and mental health consumers, quizzes, resources, and a final exam—will help first responders:

  • Understand how individuals come to experience a behavioral health crisis
  • Understand how best to make a safe connection with an individual experiencing a crisis
  • Learn about de-escalation strategies for working with people in crisis
  • Learn strategies for developing community networks and referral resources
  • Understand how to improve the safety of both the responder and the individual in crisis

SAMHSA First Response: Working on the Front Lines of the Opioid Crisis Training Course

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This free, 1-hour, online training course was developed in response to the impact of the opioid crisis on first responders across the country. It addresses the mental and physical stressors faced by firefighters, emergency medical services personnel, and police when responding to opioid overdose calls. This course also provides evidence-based coping strategies, resources, and exercises to help mitigate the impacts of these stressful events.

The course is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Pre-Hospital Continuing Education (CAPCE). Course participants complete a final exam to obtain continuing education credit.

After completing this course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the opioid crisis, including its extent and how it affects the critical work that first responders do;
  • Describe mental health and substance use issues and mental and substance use disorders that are more common among first responders than the general public;
  • Recognize the warning signs of mental and substance use disorders in yourself and your peers;
  • Help reduce stigma, or negative and incorrect ideas about mental and substance use disorders—including the nature of opioid use and misuse, opioid use disorder, and addiction, and the needs of first responders;
  • Identify and use stress management and healthy coping strategies; and
  • Share evidence-based practices and resources for self-care and positive responses to work stress.

Addiction in the Fire Service: Training for Fire Fighters, Paramedics & Dispatchers

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The purpose of this webinar is to provide continuing education in behavioral health matters for fire service professionals. This presentation “Addiction in the Fire Service” will address various types of substance use disorders and addiction experienced among fire fighters, paramedics and dispatchers. This webinar will provide insight into signs and symptoms of substance abuse and addiction, as well as resources to find help for oneself or a peer.

This presentation is ideal for IAFF members, fire service leadership, peer support team members, chaplains, spouses and other individuals in a capacity to support first responders struggling with or in recovery from addiction or a substance use disorder. We will also address how the present pandemic has changed the dynamic of recovery and substance abuse trends in this unprecedented time.

Speaker Information: Molly Jones, LSW, is the Clinical Coordinator for the IAFF Center of Excellence. In this role, Molly is responsible for working with community clinical partners across North America to design continuing care plans for clients returning to their local areas after treatment at the Center of Excellence. She travels the country providing continuing education to first responders on behavioral health topics and clinicians on cultural competency in the fire service.

Molly earned a Masters in Social Worker from the University of Oklahoma and has extensive experience in case management, behavioral health treatment and human services. In addition to case management oversight and continuing education, Molly works with local and state IAFF leadership to connect fire fighters to quality clinicians, prescribers and programs in communities across the U.S.

IAFF Disaster Response Peer Support

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The Disaster Response Peer Support training was developed as a result of more frequent and more severe natural and man-made disasters. The training provides peer supporters with information on how disasters contribute to behavioral health problems and how to intervene. Participants will learn the importance of promoting five key concepts: safety, calming, efficacy, connectedness and hope.

The goal of the program is to:

•Describe how disasters can contribute to behavioral health problems.

•Identify how peer support after a disaster is different than a typical peer support call or activity.

•List the multiple roles involved in providing peer support at a disaster area.

•Apply five principles that should guide all disaster response.

•Identify self-care activities for peer supporters before, during and after deploying to a disaster area.

•List available IAFF resources for disaster relief.

 

Service to Self online training through SAMHSA

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This free online training course informs fire and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel about their increased risk of experiencing mental health and substance use issues and conditions. It also equips them with information and resources to address these issues in themselves or their peers.

Service to Self: Behavioral Health for Fire and EMS Personnel is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Pre-Hospital Continuing Education (CAPCE).

Course participants complete a final exam to obtain continuing education credit.

This 60-minute course includes relatable firsthand video accounts from volunteer and career firefighters and emergency medical technicians, as well as helpful resources and interactive components to support learning.

This course is designed to help firefighters and EMS personnel to:

  • Be aware of risk factors for and prevalence of mental health and substance use issues in their professional communities.
  • Recognize the warning signs of mental health and substance use issues in yourself and your peers.
  • Discuss mental health and substance use-related issues with colleagues to help reduce stigma.
  • Identify and use stress management and healthy coping strategies. Be aware of and share evidence-based practices and resources for increasing capacity to cope with occupational stressors.