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Monday, November 28, 2022

FirstNet and Boulder Crest Celebrate National First Responder Day with Call to Support Posttraumatic Growth

Since the beginning of 2021, Boulder Crest has trained more than 3,800 first responders in the principles and practices of Posttraumatic Growth.

This year on National First Responder Day, October 28, FirstNet and Boulder Crest invite Americans to consider a new way to honor America’s first line of emergency defense.

“The best way to honor your community’s first responders is to give a minute to consider the true depth of their experience,” said Dr. Anna Fitch Courie, DNP, RN, PHNA-BC, Director, Responder Wellness, FirstNet Program at AT&T. “And to take one small step to demonstrate meaningful appreciation to these remarkable men and women for their real-life experiences.”

First responders race to be first on the scene of dangerous and often emotionally fraught situations. Over time these events can put first responders at increased risk of traumatic stress symptoms. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 30 percent of first responders develop behavioral health conditions including depression and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Studies show the divorce rate for law enforcement personnel is around 75% and that first responders are more likely to die from suicide than from a duty-related death.

FirstNet, the only nationwide, high-speed broadband communications platform purpose-built for America’s first responders, supports preventative training to transform the industry’s culture, biases and behaviors into ones that will better help first responders manage stress, and even register what science calls Posttraumatic Growth (PTG) after trauma.

This year, the company announced that it had become the exclusive sponsor of a First Responder Initiative created by Boulder Crest Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that develops and delivers PTG-based programs to transform the lives of first responders and veterans. FirstNet’s support is earmarked to help the Struggle Well training scale nationally over the next two years.

Since the beginning of 2021, Boulder Crest has trained more than 3,800 first responders in the principles and practices of Posttraumatic Growth — and how to “struggle well.”

“With each training we see the power of Posttraumatic Growth to transform the culture and wellbeing of first responders,” said Josh Goldberg, executive director of the Boulder Crest Institute for Posttraumatic Growth. “We’re normalizing struggle and providing them practical tools and perspectives to stop surviving and begin thriving.”

Americans are encouraged to support their local first responders with appreciation and consider joining AT&T with a tax-refundable donation for training at https://bouldercrest.org/donate/.


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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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