Coral Springs, Florida
Oscar is a certified therapy dog and part of my fire department’s PEER/ Crisis response team. He provides comfort to first responders after traumatic events. We responded to Surfside and provide comfort to the victims families as well as the responders working the scene for 3 weeks. We were awarded Firefighter and Humanitarian of the year for our volunteer service for first responders and citizens of our communities. Oscar and I have also attended many public events such as fundraisers for the special Olympics, fight for air climb which raises money for lung cancer, pass out stuffed animals to children at Joe DiMaggio children hospital, painting with children with Autism, and visiting the elderly at Alzheimer’s and Dementia facilities. Together we have spoken with children at local schools as well as first responders at a rehab facility. We are blessed to be able to do what we do and give back to the communities. It is our purpose to bring awareness to mental health for first responders and the effects it can have on our lives. We are also part of a collaborative that provides comfort to first responders all across the state of Florida. We are a certified K9 therapy dog team for the collaborative. All the work we do and places we visit is strictly on a volunteer basis. We are not paid or sponsored and do this for the love of the job. I personally know first hand the effects of mental health and how it can impact one’s life. This is my way of giving back and saying thank you.