By Tara Bitzan, Executive Director, Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
Racial tension, political unrest, a pandemic … all of these add up to extremely challenging times for responders and caregivers who have stressful careers even during the best of times. Have you ever stopped to imagine what it is like being a law enforcement officer these days? How about a health care worker? A firefighter or a first responder?
At one time not so long ago, many children grew up dreaming about these careers where they could help people, save lives, make a difference, and be held in the highest regard by others. That may not be the case so much these days, when many of these positions come with harsh judgements or criticism, shaming or degradation.
After you spend some time thinking about what it would be like serving in one of these careers in today’s world, I challenge you to think about what our community would be like without these important people. If we didn’t have such skilled and passionate law enforcement officers, the local headlines would be consumed with news of another burglary or homicide instead of feature stories on the great people who live here and the fun events going on. If we didn’t have such skilled and passionate health care professionals, our COVID-19 cases would be in the thousands by now and the death toll would rise daily. If we didn’t have such skilled and passionate firefighters, we would have lost an entire downtown block in February instead of a few buildings.
We are extremely fortunate to have these incredible people serving our community – it’s the least we can do to lend them our support.
Join us to learn more about how we can collectively support these community members at the Chamber’s Fall Event on Monday, September 28 from 1 to 2:15 pm at Broadway Ballroom.
The speaker is Silouan Green and his topic is “Building a Community of Support for Responders.” Green is a former Marine who suffered severe Post-Traumatic Stress and other issues after a jet crash. He has written three books, “Who Am I?”, “Sycamore Hill” and “The Ladder UPP”, and speaks on the topics of Post-Traumatic Stress, resiliency and leadership across the country for organizations such as the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the US Marine Corps, the Red Cross, Easter Seals, National Association of Mental Illness, and many others.
More details can be found here: alexandriamn.org/luncheon.html.