Responding to the unexpected
While the emergencies they respond to may be different, the job of any first responder is the same: spring into action when unexpected misfortune strikes. But who responds when first responder families themselves have an unexpected emergency?
Even the heroes who protect us sometimes need help. We understand the great commitment and sacrifice that comes with a life of service. We honor the sacrifices first responder children and families make by standing by them when the unexpected happens.
Support the children by supporting the family
While many of our programs provide direct support for children, we also recognize the need to support them through their first responder families. Our emergency assistance grants offer vital, immediate support to first responder families when unforeseen events impose sudden hardship and stress on all family members.
Our Bereavement grant is a financial lifeline to families in the “waiting weeks” immediately after the death of their first responder, allowing a surviving parent to be there for their children.
Our Emergency Hardship grant is a one-time emergency grant to provide immediate financial relief and help alleviate the stress a child feels from sudden misfortune.
Our Natural Disaster Response grant provides immediate financial assistance to first responder families suffering the impact of a natural disaster, to ensure their child feels safe while their parent is out helping others.
children who suffered the death of a first responder parent and were supported through a FRCF Bereavement grant
distributed in bereavement program grants to 35 families nationwide
The Rule Family
On the morning of his eldest daughter’s high school graduation, Deputy Constable Caleb Rule was killed in the line of duty, leaving behind a wife and four children. FRCF stepped in with a bereavement grant, meeting that immediate need for the Rule family while also establishing an ongoing relationship of support for years to come. Since that initial bereavement grant, FRCF has also awarded scholarships to three of Caleb’s and Eden’s children: Annie, Rosalan and Mark. Annie’s account below captures the power and impact of FRCF’s involvement:
“On the morning of my high school graduation, cap and gown hanging in the closet, family members from all over had arrived to celebrate when the Fort Bend County Precinct 4 Constable and two other officers knocked on our door to inform us that my father had been shot, and they needed my mother to come to the hospital.
About an hour later, my siblings and I were informed that our father didn’t make it. I couldn’t make sense of what was happening, but one thing I knew for sure was that I had to stay strong and keep going. Most people would never have found the strength to be able to move throughout the day as planned; however, I found it for my dad and through my dad. I walked the stage to receive my diploma, because I knew my dad would want me to. About 100 officers attended, lining the track, standing in place of my father, who would have been cheering the loudest of all.”
Annie and Eden Rule discuss the profound impact of losing Caleb Rule leaving a family of five behind.