For Immediate Release
VETERANS COUNCIL OF INDIAN RIVER DESIGNATED THE FIRST VETERAN SAFE PLACE IN INDIAN RIVER COUNTY
By Michele Peters
(VERO BEACH, FL) The Veterans Council of Indian River County (VCIRC) has been designated as the first Veteran Safe Place in Indian River County by The Fire Watch, a state-wide organization fighting to end veteran suicide.
In 2021, The Fire Watch created the Veteran Safe Place (VSP) program for businesses and organizations to show their support, and to help eliminate veteran suicide throughout Florida. The VSP program is designed specifically for organizations to educate, train and empower their employees to be able to identify and support a veteran in crisis. All VCIRC administrative staff and drivers completed training to identify the warning signs of veterans in crisis and suicide in order to receive the Veteran Safe Space designation. VCIRC was presented a certificate at the General Council meeting on May 3, 2023.
“Our participation with the Fire Watch as a Veteran Safe Place strengthens our commitment to serving veterans in our community” said Cynthia Ryan, Executive Director of the Veterans Council. “VCIRC is honored to join the life-saving network of members and organizations trained to identify the warning signs of veterans in crisis. As the lead Veteran’s support agency in Indian River County providing services through a holistic approach, we collaborate with local organizations for PTSD support groups as well as mental health and substance abuse resources within Indian River County and the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center.”
“It is great for the Veterans Council of Indian River County to be part of The Fire Watch’s network in Indian River County. By taking just 30-40 minutes to complete our free training they have chosen to join the fight to help END Veteran suicide!” said Henry Angulo, The Fire Watch Regional Programs Director.
The Veterans Council of Indian River County is the lead agency for providing programs and direct aid to veterans and their families in Indian River County and is a United Way of Indian River partner agency. The mission of the Veterans Council of Indian River County is to support all Indian River County veterans and their families while raising awareness of veterans’ needs and their contributions to society. For more information about the Veterans Council of Indian River County, visit http://helpIRCvets.org or call (772) 410-5820
Based in Florida, The Fire Watch is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to ending veteran suicide by raising awareness of the urgent need for intervention. By training community members to recognize suicidal behaviors in veterans, The Fire Watch strives to build a life-saving network of co-workers, family and friends that stands watch over our nation’s heroes and can direct a veteran in need to vital resources and certified mental health professionals. Learn how you can stand watch with us at thefirewatch.org.
Pictured from Left to Right: Henry Angulo, Regional Programs Director, The Fire Watch; Cynthia Ryan, Executive Director of the Veterans Council of Indian River County; and Shanen Cox, Veterans Council Program Director.