Road to Mental Readiness - Call for Video Subjects
The Road to Mental Readiness (R2MR) is a much needed and valuable mental health training program that effectively assists the relevant demands and responsibilities of the fire service to ensure that supports are in place to prevent, and treat if necessary, those impacted by mental illness and mental illness stigma.
 
The R2MR Program material has a solid foundation in the concepts related to resilience skill building. Resilience is the capacity of people to recover quickly, resist and possibly even thrive in the face of direct/indirect traumatic events and prolonged operational or organizational stressors. Candidates should be able to model resilience to reinforce these principles during and after the training. The program has been developed into a four-hour primary course and an eight-hour leadership course. A key component of R2MR is to have all employees – support and operations, at all ranks, speaking the same language when presenting an assessment of a mental health concern.  It is a peer driven, proactive model with the intent to create a psychologically safe environment. Recovery from physical and mental hardships is required throughout a career in the fire service.
 
The R2MR program features a few short video montages of people who have suffered from a mental illness and/or stigma, has recovered, and who can talk about their experience, how they sought help, what helped and how they are doing now.  Content for the R2MR Program has been modified from its original conception to fit the needs of the fire service. The last component required for full modification is to integrate relevant fire service related videos into the program.  As such, the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs is seeking individuals within the fire service who have recovered from a mental health illness who would be willing to share their story with us for the program.   Past experiences dictates that class participants will sometimes share personal stories and experiences during classroom discussions based on the experiences and stories viewed within the program.  It is appropriate and important that people sharing their experiences within the program have firefighter experience so they are able to relate effectively to those who disclose in the classroom setting.  It is an extremely valuable portion of the program and individuals who choose to share with us can be assured that their contributions are positively and directly assisting those who may need help.
 
If you are interested in assisting the fire service in mental health training and resiliency, and would like to participate in this important initiative by sharing your story, please contact Brad Bigrigg, OAFC Program Manager at 905-426-9865 x228 or
brad.bigrigg@oafc.on.ca.
 
Please feel free to share this request within your fire service.  Further information will be provided to those who contact us.