Prince William endorses the Fire Fighters Charity’s new crisis line


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Fire Fighters Charity introduces 24/7 crisis support line

The Fire Fighters Charity has officially launched a 24/7 crisis line to offer direct support to current and former fire service personnel struggling with suicidal thoughts.

This new helpline was unveiled at the Emergency Services Mental Health Symposium and aims to fill a critical gap in mental health support for emergency responders.

The Crisis Line, which can be reached at 0300 373 0896, received backing from HRH The Prince of Wales and The Royal Foundation, marking a significant development in mental health advocacy for firefighters.

HRH The Prince of Wales acknowledges the effort of emergency responders

During the symposium, a video message from His Royal Highness was broadcast, in which he acknowledged the significance of the crisis line and expressed gratitude for the continuous efforts of emergency responders.

He also praised the network of charities and services dedicated to supporting the emergency responder community.

Collaborative funding and suicide prevention resources

The launch follows the release of a set of online suicide prevention and postvention resources tailored for the fire services community.

The resources, available at the Fire Fighters Charity’s website, provide crucial information for individuals affected by suicide or those concerned about themselves or someone else.

Funding for the first year of the crisis line has been provided by the Blue Light Card Foundation, with subsequent support pledged by all fire and rescue services for two more years.

Dr Jill Tolfrey, the Chief Executive of The Fire Fighters Charity, along with Sharon Bailey, Director of Beneficiary Services, Joss Gaynor, Director of Health Improvement & Influencing, and other colleagues, participated in the symposium.

Sharon Bailey was involved in a panel discussion that addressed the complex issue of suicide within emergency services, covering topics from individual support to crisis intervention.

Furthermore, one of the Charity’s beneficiaries joined a family panel to address the challenges emergency responder families face and to identify practical solutions.

IFSJ Comment

In the face of increasing awareness of mental health issues among emergency service personnel, the Fire Fighters Charity’s launch of a 24/7 crisis line is a timely and crucial step in providing accessible support.

With the endorsement of Prince William and the involvement of a broad network of emergency service charities, the Charity has positioned itself as a pivotal resource for those in the firefighting community seeking help.

The collaborative approach, not only in funding but also in sharing experiences and strategies, demonstrates a unified front in tackling the often-overlooked issue of mental health in this sector.

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