All too often, the impact of these events on those who served goes unspoken and unrecognized. There are too many roles, too many titles and too many components of a response system to truly grasp the number of lives that can be touched by just a single incident. In all of their capacities, each person who directly (or indirectly) contributes to an incident becomes emotionally and physically invested. And, like all investments, there is a cost. Many times the demands of the shift dictate the need for that cost to go unnoticed, unacknowledged and unaddressed. That cost is emotional well-being.
teamEMS is an organization dedicated to off-setting that cost. At teamEMS, we have personally experienced being “in the trenches” as members of that response team. Having paid the emotional toll, we seek to enrich lives within our community of peers. The mission: teamEMS exists to promote and encourage health and wellness in the EMS community by empowering people through outreach, education and competition. Team Captain Robert Conner say’s “We are here to acknowledge the stress and trauma that professionals experience, make it okay to talk about it, and provide outlets for a healthy lifestyle.” As a small group of friends for the past several years, teamEMS is proud to announce our new mission statement and strategy to achieve that goal. “We are so excited to see how the tremendous amount of sponsor support in 2017 will launch us into the coming years.” continued Robert.
Starting in 2018, teamEMS will be known as teamEMS Racing and Outreach, Inc, a formal Colorado Non-profit organization, followed thereafter as a Federal 501c3. This new growth and official structure will enable us to reach more people. Through the assistance of sponsors, the team negotiates discounted equipment and entries so that responders can race in competitive events. In addition, the team will be providing education and outreach to our peers, to teach about healthy living and recognition of PTSD. We will also provide coaching skills for beginners in several sports such as running, mountain biking and much more. Committing to a mountain bike or other race means that an individual will dedicate time and energy into preparing for that event which will ultimately lead to increased health both physically and emotionally. And, following the race, he/she will experience the sense of accomplishment and excitement that must be experienced to be truly understood. We hope to support our co-workers, and more broadly, our surrounding communities. Happier and healthier professionals can influence positive change throughout an organization, meaning overall improved work satisfaction. Constituents of the services provided by these emergency workers is enhanced. Team member and ER RN Paul Geslao says, “I can truly feel a positive change in my approach to work and life when I have made time to ride my bike.”
Our goal is to grow the team into a community of peers who share in our vision for achieving work-life balance. We hope to see the hashtag #teamEMS full of success stories showing how enriched off duty lives have provided the strength to our peers needed to fund the investment of emotions needed to serve.