Phoenix Society Offers Resources for Firefighters
June 9, 2014
People who suffer burn injuries often have a challenging time getting back to living. The Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors helps them do exactly that. Since 1977, the Phoenix Society For Burn Survivors has been the only national burn survivor organization working with survivors, families, healthcare professionals, the fire industry, and donors to support burn recovery, improve the quality of burn care, and prevent burn injuries.
The Phoenix Society has many programs and resources to help burn victims and their families. All of these resources are available to burn-injured firefighters, but some of the programs have firefighter-specific components. Resources include the following:
Phoenix SOAR (Survivors Offering Assistance in Recovery): The Phoenix SOAR program provides training for survivors and family members who want to volunteer to help others. Available in over 64 burn centers, this hospital-based program was developed to ensure that every burn survivor and their loved ones have access to someone who has truly “been there.” Working with National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) and the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Charitable Foundation, the network now includes over 40 trained burn-injured firefighters and families to assist those burn injured in the line of duty.
Phoenix World Burn Congress: This annual three-day conference serving over 900 participants is a premier burn survivor event focused on providing recovery education and peer support in a caring environment. Specific programming is available to assist in recovery of the burn-injured firefighters and their families. Over 100 firefighters are engaged as volunteers to support attendees. This has offered a unique experience for the fire service to close the loop by interacting with survivors and families who have healed and are living meaningful lives.
On-line Resource Center and Support Community: Since burn care is very regional, the Society’s web site provides a community of support that includes burn recovery stories, resources, articles, chats, forums, and ways to meet others who have experienced a burn injury. The Society is expanding self guided learn modules focused on recovery and advocacy. Follow them online at www.phoenix-society.org and www.facebook.com/PhoenixSocietyforBurnSurvivors.
The Journey Back: The Journey Back is a resource that will help you support your family, your students, or someone you know who is working towards the ever important recovery step of returning to school. Together with the NFFF, this program has been expanded to be used when there is a LODD and children go back to school after loss of a parent and a highly publicized death of a firefighter.
Phoenix Burn Support Magazine (BSM): BSM is a magazine that is full of articles on the emotional, psychological, and social aspects of burn recovery. Included are feature stories on burn survivors and their family members who are traveling the road to recovery. BSM also covers the latest news in the burn community, original works written by burn survivors, and information on burn care and safety legislation.
Phoenix Educational Grant Program (PEG): The PEG is the first national scholarship endowment fund created for burn survivor students.
Prevention and Advocacy: As a national organization, the Society’s efforts are focused on policy development and legislative measures that will have a permanent impact on decreasing burn injuries or improving the care of those with burn injuries. By sharing information and educating their membership, the Society is active in promoting change by adding the burn survivors’ voice.
Over the years, fire service participation and presence within the Phoenix Society has grown. Out of this involvement with the fire service, specific programing has been added to support the firefighters and families who have experienced a burn injury in the line of duty. Additional articles and information about some of these resources are as follows:
- Getting Through the Fire: One Couple’s Guidebook for “Surviving Survival” – This article tells the story of the recovery and healing process for one burn-injured firefighter and his wife.
- Firefighters and Their Families: Making Connections at WBC – This article provides an overview of the burn-injured firefighter support group at the Phoenix Society’s World Burn Congress.
- Peer Support for Burn-Injured Firefighters and their Families – This fact sheet provides information on how to participate in the firefighter peer support component of the Survivors Offering Assistance in Recovery (SOAR) program.
- Accessing Peer Support for Burn Injured Firefighters and their Families – This flowchart provides additional information on SOAR-trained firefighter peer supporters.