Family Counseling Service provides mental health support for first responders

Family Counseling Service launched their First Responders Behavioral Health Program in July 2021. Since the program's inception, the Aurora area nonprofit has provided over 120 hours of service to local first responders and veterans.

The First Responder Behavioral Health Program actively considers the specialized needs, preferences, and concerns that first responders may have in seeking behavioral health treatment. The goal is to reduce stigma and barriers that could inhibit first responders and veterans from seeking treatment.

"The program gave me an outlet for the pain I was experiencing and a way to take a step forward to get through my struggles and refocus on positive things. I participate in the program because I see the benefits of having that outlet as a first responder. Many of us see and experience things that affect us long-term and this program serves to help us recalibrate and compartmentalize the stress of the job so that we can better serve our communities," says a First Responder client.

"As a law enforcement executive, I know the importance of officer wellness for my officers. Policing has always been a difficult profession, but 2021 was a year like no other. The number of traumatic events that officers now face are beyond anything I have seen in 30 years of law enforcement. Family Counseling Service provides much needed help for first responders as they face these trying times" says a local police leader client.

Benefits of the First Responder Behavioral Health Program include:

• Opportunity to work directly with a Behavioral health and substance abuse therapist who is also a former police officer of 10 years.

• Only program in our area that offers this type of program that cater to the specific mental health needs of first responders and veterans.

• Increased resilience and improved mental and physical health for first responders and veterans by processing traumas in a safe and confidential space.

The First Responder Behavioral Health Program is currently accepting new clients. For more information on the First Responder Behavioral Health Program, visit

Serving the community since 1925, Family Counseling Service is a nonprofit, accredited, 501(c)3 organization that provides a wide range of counseling services in Aurora and Oswego Illinois. If you, a family member, loved one or friend are going through difficulties, they can help you get through these tough times. Learn more about the services the nonprofit offers at

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