The San Francisco First Responders Stair climb was started to bring awareness and support to first responders suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Injuries. We hold the event each year around the time of 9/11 in remembrance of those that gave their lives and those Fire Fighters, Police EMS and dispatchers whose lives are forever affected by exposure to traumatic events. The non-profit funds raised will pay for first responders throughout the state of California to attend PTSD programs. We climb to save the lives of those that save yours.
On a daily basis, Firefighters, Paramedics, and Police officers are witness to numerous tragic incidents while on duty. This recurrent, cumulative exposure to horrific events is the reason that the Journal of Occupational Health estimates that approximately 20 percent of Firefighters and Paramedics suffer from Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), while the general population experiences PTSD at a rate of 3.5 percent. Treatment options are available, but many are not covered by health insurance, and must be paid for out-of-pocket. Oftentimes, these costs are prohibitive for the rescuer in need of help.
This is why we climb.
WHY WE CLIMB?
On a daily basis, Firefighters and Paramedics witness numerous tragic incidents while on duty. This recurrent, cumulative exposure to horrific events is the reason that the Journal of Occupational Health estimates that approximately 20 percent of Firefighters and Paramedics suffer from Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), while the general population experiences PTSD at a rate of 3.5 percent. Treatment options are available, but many are not covered by health insurance, and must be paid for out-of-pocket. Oftentimes, these costs are prohibitive for the rescuer in need of help.
This is why we climb…
Because of the demands of their profession, firefighters and first responders succumb to numerous mental health issues, including PTSD, substance abuse, and suicide, at alarming rates.
What is a first responder?
A person who is among those responsible for going immediately to the scene of an accident or emergency to provide assistance, including police, fire and dispatchers.
What is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
A mental health condition that's triggered by a terrifying event – either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event. (Mayo Clinic)
How does this affect Our Firefighters?
Firefighters have significantly higher rates of PTSD than the average person. The rate for PTSD in Firefighters is over 22% with the strongest predictor being number of years of service. The more time on the job, the more likely it is that Firefighters experience PTSD.
What are Firefighter rates of alcohol addiction?
One of the most common symptom of PTSD is alcohol addiction. Almost 30% of Firefighters experience problematic alcohol use. (Boxer and Wild, 1993)
Cincinnati's National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health conducted a survey in 1993 where it reported an estimate that up to 29% of Firefighters have had problems with alcohol use and/or abuse. (Clinical Psychology Associates, 2013)
What is the rate of suicide among Firefighters?
Sadly, without help Firefighters are at a greater risk of contemplating suicide. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, with and estimated 13 people per 100,000 dying by suicide annually. A study published in July 2016 by the Centers for Disease Control looked at suicide in 17 states and found that rates of suicide among emergency services personnel (which includes both firefighters and police) was 34.1 per 100,000, more than double the national average among the general population. (www.firechief.com, 8-15-16)
A Florida State University Study has shown that nearly half of Firefighters have contemplated suicide and approximately 15.5 percent have actually attempted suicide.
This is why we climb.
How will the 501C3 funds be used (excludes registration fee portion)?
All donations are paid to FirefighterAid, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization Tax ID #33-6091348. Your gift is tax deductible to the extent permitted by applicable law. The registration fees for the 2017 San Francisco Stair Climb will be used for the administration and production of the event and are not tax deductible as they are received in exchange for goods and services. The funds not associated with registration will go toward directly funding programs and treatments for first responders suffering from PTSD and ten percent will remain with FirefighterAid, a non profit dedicated to providing charitable assistance to Firefighters and their families in times of need.
Space is limited! Registration will be shut off once we have reached our capacity.
We love our volunteers. It takes a village to put on this event. This event is made possible by the hard work of volunteers, including members of the San Francisco Fire Commission, the San Francisco Fire Department, Local 798, our partners at Vornado Realty Trust, CBS Radio, FireghterAid and the dozens of volunteers on race day. Sign up to volunteer at www.sfstairclimb.com/contact. We will be successful in large part to those who volunteer.
Are you in Southern California on September 9, 2017?
If you are in the San Diego area on September 9, 2017, we have a stair climb for you too. Join our partners to the south at the 2017 San Diego 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb.