www.edrs-support.com is our site address. EDRS is Emergency and Disaster Responders Support Site.
Simply put: We provide responders a way to share confidentially what is going on in their head and heart after they realize that an event or series of events has "stuck" and is causing them real, life changing problems
First responders like police, state patrol, border patrol officers, firefighters, ambulance responders and their counterparts see so many difficult and sometime horrible things that even if they seem to be able to manage years of bad events, there will be a particular event that somehow "pushes a button" and all the stress comes back at once and that person is overwhelmed with emotion, conflicted feelings and overwhelming thoughts and memories that can really impact even the most seasoned professional.
The Emergency and Disaster Responders Support Site was created to
provide a support system or "safety net" for those impacted by traumatic events. In our first two years of operation we were able to circumvent 6 potential suicides and provide over 100 separate traumatic events that had already impacted a responder.
I have been responding to emergencies and disasters for over 26 years. As a Fire Department Chaplain and then, in addition, as a responder using Critical Incident Stress Management (special mental health immediate support to responders and victims of emergencies and disasters).
In this role, I began noticing more and more of those who risk everything to keep us safe including police, firemen, EMS responders as well as second level responders like Red Cross, Salvation Army and so many more were responding to events that could be difficult to experience without some level of support to talk through the problems and provide mental and emotional assistance immediately at and after the incident. So many responders do not have the chance or opportunity to get that support.
The Ning network made this site possible with it's free site. This year with the changing of the pricing structure, we were not sure how we would keep this life saving site open. There is no funding source for this network. Everyone here volunteers their time and efforts. We notified our over 700 members and they immediately provided enough funding to cover this year.
No one can predict the future. We can be assured that the need for this site, (the only one of it's kind on the internet) will continue to help those who risk everything for us. We expect to be there to provide them that much needed help.