Firefighters: they’re the iconic men and women that make a difference in our community through simple things such as educating children and community leaders on fire safety to rescuing someone from a burning building. Despite all the heroism, they’re people just like you and me. They shop in the same grocery stores and walk the same streets. They have families to take care of and kids they have to spend lots of money on. . . Between saving lives and keeping up with a family, firefighters…Continue
When I attended the Illinois Fire Fighter Peer Support (ILFFPS) 3 day training in September 2015, it started as any training would. The instructor began by introducing himself but after that, it was clear that this was different from other classes. This was a training for those who wanted to learn what it meant to be a Firefighter Peer Supporter.
Primary Instructor Lt. Matt Olson began sharing his story; a story that involved multiple difficult calls and traumatic incidents at work…Continue
As a part of the Florian Program Advisory Board, I have the privilege of attending an annual meeting that allows me to hear from some of the best and brightest minds in the area of firefighter behavioral health. The Florian Program is a recent addition to the Rosecrance Institute in Rockford, Illinois, and it focuses on firefighters who are struggling with substance abuse and any other type of co-occurring issue. This program has a group of professionals who understand the firefighter…Continue
Added by Jeremy Hurd on August 3, 2015 at 10:54am — No Comments
When I purchased my tickets to FDIC last fall I had no idea what to expect. I knew I was going to Indianapolis and taking some classes. I knew that I would be doing my radio show on Monday afternoon (which you were probably listening to or are going to download). Other than that I really didn’t know what else was going to be headed my way. Tammie and I landed on Thursday night and spent the next three days seeing the sites and enjoying some time away. On Sunday afternoon, I walked into the…Continue
Added by Jeremy Hurd on April 23, 2015 at 9:24am — No Comments
Because of the special season that we’re in, I decided to take a brief break from the Chaplain Program specifics and share some thoughts about this time of year that means different things to different people. Some celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and even Festivus J (If you would like to share your experiences of “airing your grievances” or “feats of strength” around the Festivus pole, let me know). Regardless of what you celebrate, this month of December and the holidays that are…Continue
Added by Jeremy Hurd on December 24, 2014 at 8:26pm — No Comments
In the first two blogs we discussed the different factors that are important if you want to begin a chaplain program. Many of them relate directly to your drive and determination in seeing the plan through regardless of the obstacles you face in beginning this important program.
This time I would like to focus on how to be effective once this program has gotten off the ground. How do you make sure that you are influencing people and making a difference in your department?…Continue
Added by Jeremy Hurd on November 9, 2014 at 10:41am — No Comments
If you have noticed the need for a chaplain program (and if you are in a fire department that has no chaplain then you have a need . . .), then it’s time to do something about it. We all know that many of the greatest feats, inventions, successes, and accomplishments have come from one person with a simple idea, a single-minded focus and determination, and a willingness to take one step and continue following the path laid out before him or her until the goal was met. A chaplain program is…Continue
Added by Jeremy Hurd on September 14, 2014 at 6:02pm — No Comments
One of the time-honored traditions of the fire service is the local fire department chaplain. Often it is the local priest, and FDNY is a great example of this type of chaplaincy. However, what I’ve come to realize is that there are many types of chaplain programs out there in our fire service. There are full-time paid chaplains who care for the spiritual and emotional needs of the fire department personnel 24/7. There are volunteer clergy (pastors, rabbis, priests, etc), who give their time…Continue