What is First Responders United?

The mission of First Responders United is to provide a therapeutic retreat for First Responders (firefighters, law enforcement officers, correctional officers, paramedics, and 911 communications staff and dispatchers) to promote and support their recovery from operational traumatic stress incidents that they are exposed to in their careers.

Our purpose is to provide First Responders with evidence-based psychological treatment as well as education, self-care strategies, and an informal peer support network to enable them to reduce the symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), encourage healthy career decisions and reduce the long-term impact of traumatic incident stress on an individual’s life.

The First Responders United PTSD Retreat is a 5-day residential therapeutic program that is facilitated by mental health professionals who themselves were former veteran First Responders and who have had their own first hand experience with PTSD.  These mental health professionals are assisted by volunteer first responder peers who are in recovery from PTSD and who have completed the First Responders United PTSD Residential Retreat.

While First Responders United is an outreach ministry of St. John’s United Church in Cardinal, Ontario, our program is not religiously based.

First Responders from all or no religious traditions are welcome to participate in our 5-day residential program.  And we welcome all First Responders regardless of their cultural, ethnic, or sexual orientation.

All members of First Responders United team, including all of the mental health professionals, peer supporters, and other staff members volunteer their time and energy to helping First Responders in their recovery from PTSD.

If you are a First Responder or if you know of a First Responder who could benefit from our assistance, please feel free to contact us.

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