FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION AND MOTOROLA SOLUTIONS FOUNDATION CREATE NEW CAREER MENTORING PROGRAM FOR CHILDREN OF FALLEN FIRST RESPONDERS

FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION AND MOTOROLA SOLUTIONS FOUNDATION CREATE NEW CAREER MENTORING PROGRAM FOR CHILDREN OF FALLEN FIRST RESPONDERS

New York, NY (July, 13 2021) – First Responders Children’s Foundation (FRCF) in partnership with the Motorola Solutions Foundation today announced a new virtual one-on-one mentoring program to support the children of fallen first responders who are preparing to enter the job market. Members from Motorola Solutions’ Young Professional Group will meet with FRCF’s Scholarship Program students to review resumes, conduct mock interviews, answer questions and engage in conversations about launching their careers.

Karem Perez, Executive Director of the Motorola Solutions Foundation shares, “We’re humbled by our nation’s first responders who selflessly serve and make the ultimate sacrifice. The Motorola Solutions Foundation and our Young Professionals Group volunteers are honored to give back to the children and families of fallen first responders, to share guidance and career insights as they embark on this important phase in their lives.”

Some of FRCF’s scholarship recipients, whose stories of resilience motivate and inspire, include: Samantha Switzer, who lost her FDNY firefighter father, William, to 9/11-related cancer, graduated from the accelerated nursing program at NYU and is now a registered nurse in an oncology ward at a hospital in nyc; Thomas Caputo, who lost both his grandfather and uncle in the World Trade Center South Tower on 9/11, is a Villanova University student studying medicine; and Storm Randolph, a Cal Polytechnic State University student studying computer engineering and is the recipient of the Vincent Bennet, Jr. Memorial Scholarship.

The virtual one-on-one mentoring will take place between 4:00pm and 6:00pm (ET) on Tuesday, July 13.

ABOUT FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION
First Responders Children’s Foundation provides financial support to children who have lost a parent in the line of duty as well to families enduring significant financial hardship due to tragic circumstances. First Responders Children’s Foundation also supports, promotes, and facilitates educational activities and programs created and operated by first responder organizations whose purpose is to benefit children or the community at large. FRCF has awarded college scholarships to hundreds of deserving children of first responders. Scholars are selected based on financial need, academic merit and achievements such as demonstrated leadership, excellence in the arts or sports and volunteer activities benefiting the community. In 2020, the Foundation granted college scholarships to 126 students, in every field of academia. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org. Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

ABOUT MOTOROLA SOLUTIONS FOUNDATION
As the charitable and philanthropic arm of Motorola Solutions, the Motorola Solutions Foundation partners with organizations around the globe to create safer cities and equitable, thriving communities. We focus on giving back through strategic grants, employee volunteerism and other community investment initiatives. Our strategic grants program supports organizations that offer first responder programming and technology and engineering education, and align to our values of accountability, innovation, impact, diversity and inclusion. The Foundation is one of the many ways in which the company lives out its purpose of helping people be their best in the moments that matter. For more information on Motorola Solutions corporate and foundation giving, visit our website: www.motorolasolutions.com/foundation.

ABOUT MOTOROLA SOLUTIONS
Motorola Solutions is a global leader in mission-critical communications and analytics. Our technologies in land mobile radio mission-critical communications, video security & analytics and command center software, bolstered by managed & support services, make communities safer and help businesses stay productive and secure. At Motorola Solutions, we are ushering in a new era in public safety and security. Learn more at www.motorolasolutions.com

First Responders Children’s Foundation and CSX Pride in Service Partner with Saugerties Police to Bring the Lights On! Program to Mid-Hudson Communities

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First Responders Children’s Foundation and CSX Pride in Service Partner with Saugerties Police to Bring the Lights On! Program to Mid-Hudson Communities

Innovative, Community-Driven Program Supports Law Enforcement and Auto Service Providers to Replace Tickets with Repair Vouchers at No Cost

SAUGERTIES (May 26, 2021) – First Responders Children’s Foundation, in coordination with CSX, will provide financial support for The Saugerties Police Department as they implement the Lights On! program in the Mid-Hudson Valley.

Lights On! is a nationwide program that encourages law enforcement agencies to issue repair vouchers—instead of tickets—when motorists are stopped for minor mechanical violations. The mission of Lights On! is to heal relationships between communities and law enforcement agencies. The program is community funded, making the financial support of First Responders Children’s Foundation and CSX Pride in Service critical to its success.

“As a Foundation, we strive to create strong relationships with first responder agencies and the broader community. Lights On! is a perfect example of these relationships,” said Jillian Crane, President of the First Responders Children’s Foundation. “Law Enforcement Officers understand that many individuals have to choose between putting food on the table or paying a ticket. Instead of ticketing people for trying to do the best they can, First Responders Children’s Foundation, the Police Department of Ulster County and Sawyer car dealership want to create positive relationships and trust between the police and community. Giving a coupon to fix a taillight instead of a ticket is one small way that police can say that we care about you and we understand.”

The program’s mission is two-fold: giving struggling motorists a break and improving relationships between communities and the police.

“The Lights On! program is for those who may not be able to afford repairing a vehicle,” says Saugerties Police Chief Joseph Sinagra. “Especially now, with the added financial problems brought about by COVID-19, a citation for these minor offenses can lead to further financial strain, and to additional confrontations with law enforcement.”

Sinagra said once the program gets going, his officers will have the discretion during routine stops to issue vouchers instead of citations for the mechanical violations.

“Instead of punishing drivers for broken lights, we can fix the mechanical issue and mitigate what often becomes a downward spiral for community members in need,” says Don Samuels, CEO and founder of Lights On!. “We are giving officers a new tool on their duty belt that creates a positive interaction, especially needed in these tense times.”

To learn more about how to support Lights On! visit 1stRCF.org.

Media Contact:
Joanna Black
Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships
Joanna@1stRCF.org
(646) 912-2681

About First Responders Children’s Foundation

For the past 20 years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has been providing college scholarships to children of first responders who have lost a parent in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports programs operated by law enforcement organizations whose purpose is to benefit children or the community in which they live. The Foundation’s annual Thanksgiving Day Parade breakfast hosts children and family members of those lost in the line of duty for a free breakfast and front-row view of the Parade so those families can gather and heal during what might otherwise be a stressful holiday. More information can be found at www.1stRCF.org. Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

About CSX

CSX, based in Jacksonville, Florida, is a premier transportation company. It provides rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services and solutions to customers across a broad array of markets, including energy, industrial, construction, agricultural and consumer products. For nearly 200 years, CSX has played a critical role in the nation’s economic expansion and industrial development. Its network connects every major metropolitan area in the eastern United States, where nearly two-thirds of the nation’s population resides. It also links more than 230 short-line railroads and more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports with major population centers and farming towns alike. More information about CSX Corporation and its subsidiaries is available at www.csx.com. Like us on Facebook (https://facebook.com/OfficialCSX) and follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/CSX).

About Lights On!

Lights On! is a community-driven program which offers repair vouchers instead of traffic tickets for participating law enforcement agencies and communities they serve. The program was founded after the unnecessary death of Philando Castile in 2016 as a solution to a small problem that has a significant community impact. Officers can provide drivers with Lights On! vouchers redeemable for free repairs of broken lights at partnered auto shops. The vouchers reduce the financial burden that could lead to a potential downward spiral for community members in need as well as creates a positive interaction between drivers and officers, to rebuild trust. Lights On! was created by Don Samuels, CEO of MicroGrants, a non-profit dedicated to providing people of potential with grants that spur economic stability by bridging the gap between their current state and a more successful future. For more information, visit LightsOnUS.org and follow Lights On! on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES MENTAL & BEHAVIORAL HEALTH PROGRAM FOR FIRST RESPONDERS & THEIR FAMILIES

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FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES MENTAL & BEHAVIORAL HEALTH PROGRAM FOR FIRST RESPONDERS & THEIR FAMILIES
SERVICES WILL BE PROVIDED TO FDNY FOUNDATION, NYC POLICE FOUNDATION & OTHER AGENCIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY THROUGH FRIENDS OF FIREFIGHTERS & 911 AT EASE INTERNATIONAL

New York, NY (May 12th, 2021) – Today, First Responders Children’s Foundation announced a commitment to the mental health and well-being of America’s first responders and their families with the launch of a Mental & Behavioral Health Program in conjunction with Mental Health Awareness Month, the pandemic recovery, and the 20-year commemoration of 9/11.

The announcement was made at The FDNY Fire Zone and in attendance were representatives from first responder agencies, Foundations and non-profits including;

Daniel Nigro, FDNY Commissioner
David Shmerler, Director of Counseling Service Unit at FDNY
Kenneth Quick, NYPD Deputy Inspector, Commanding Officer of the Office of Deputy Commis-
sioner, Employee Relations
Alfred R. Kahn, Founder & Chairman, First Responders Children’s Foundation
Jillian Crane, President, First Responders Children’s Foundation
Scott Perrin, Executive Director, First Responders Children’s Foundation
Susan L. Birnbaum, President & CEO, NYC Police Foundation
Stephen L. Ruzow, Chairman, FDNY Foundation
Jean O’Shea, Executive Director, FDNY Foundation
Nancy Carbone, Executive Director, Friends of Firefighters

In 2020 the First Responders Children’s Foundation helped 232,000 first responder families through its many programs and distributed $1.5 million in support of mental health. At today’s press conference Jillian Crane, President of First Responders Children’s Foundation, an nounced the launch of the Mental & Behavioral Health Program by awarding $100,000 to first responder programs, including:

  • FDNY Foundation: Peer-to-peer counseling, especially for EMTs
  • NYC Police Foundation: The build-out of the NYPD yoga studio and a new Health and Wellness Welcome Center
  • Friends of Firefighters: Clinical and wellness support to firefighter families
  • 911 At Ease International: Trauma-informed counseling for first responders in California, Idaho, Minnesota and the Navajo Nation

First responders are taxed like never before—they are suffering from PTSD, depression, anxiety, hopelessness and stress. The rates of PTSD and depression within police agencies are five times higher than that of the civilian population. The PTSD rate for firefighters and EMTs is twice as high as that of the civilian population. The CDC has reported that first responders may be at an elevated risk for suicide because of the environments in which they work, their culture, and both occupational and personal stress. Law enforcement officers and firefighters are more likely to die by suicide than in the line of duty and EMS providers are 1.39 times more likely to die by suicide than the public. Bluehelp.org reports that this year alone, 57 officers have been lost to suicide.

“For the past year and a half, under the most anxiety-provoking and life-threatening circumstances, first responders including EMTs, paramedics, firefighters, police, nurses and medical personnel have been putting their lives on the line for the communities they serve,” said Jillian Crane, President of First Responders Children’s Foundation. “The mental health and well-being of these courageous individuals and their children is a focus for us at First Responders Children’s Foundation.”

There is a critical need for more mental health support specific to the needs of first responder professions. Now more than ever during COVID and leading up to the 20th Anniversary of 9/11— first responders and their families need to have access to mental and behavioral health programs and initiatives, including resources that address the shame and stigma of receiving services.

“Last year was painful for everyone and for our members they responded to more calls per day than ever before during the worst moments of this pandemic. They have had to break the bad news to so many families that their loved ones had died and they did that difficult, brave and noble work while concerned for their own help and the health of their families,” said FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro. “To have First Responders Children’s Foundation stepping up to helping our members and helping expand services is just a wonderful act of generosity. On behalf of all of us, thank you to First Responders Children’s Foundation.”

The First Responders Children’s Foundation Mental & Behavioral Health Program represents a commitment to support agencies and organizations that provide much-needed support to first responder families. The Foundation will also provide grants on a case-by-case basis to first responders and their children needing mental health services they otherwise could not afford.

First Responders Children’s Foundation is inviting individuals and companies to donate and help raise the $500,000 needed to continue to support these programs.

Donations can be made by visiting 1stRCF.org.

Press Conference
L to R: Stephen Ruzow, Jean O’Shea, Nancy Carbone, Jillian Crane, Susan Birnbaum, Daniel Nigro (behind Susan), Kenneth Quick, David Shmerler, Al Kahn
Jillian Crane
Jillian Crane
Al Kahn
Al Kahn
L to R: Natalie Riegel, Joanna Black, Jillian Crane, FDNY Jean O'Shea, Friends of Firefighters Nancy Carbone, Scott Perrin
L to R: Natalie Riegel, Joanna Black, Jillian Crane, FDNY Jean O'Shea, Friends of Firefighters Nancy Carbone, Scott Perrin
Child and Firetruck
Child and Firetruck

Media Contact:
Joanna Black
Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships
Joanna@1stRCF.org
(646) 912-2681

About First Responders Children’s Foundation

For 20 years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has been awarding college scholarships to the children of first responder parents who have been injured or lost in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports educational activities and programs created by first responder organizations to benefit children or the communities in which they live.

The First Responders Children’s Foundation Emergency Response Fund provides financial hardship grants, PPE, and hotel accommodations to first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. The Foundation also pays for funerals of first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org. Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

THE FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION TOY EXPRESS WILL DELIVER FREE TOYS & MASKS TO FIRST RESPONDER FAMILIES AND FIRST RESPONDER AGENCIES NATIONWIDE

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THE FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION TOY EXPRESS WILL DELIVER FREE TOYS & MASKS TO FIRST RESPONDER FAMILIES AND FIRST RESPONDER AGENCIES NATIONWIDE

NEW YORK, NY (November 16, 2020) – Today is the official launch of the First Responders Children’s Foundation Toy Express, a program that will help spread joy to children across the country during the 2020 holiday season.

First Responders Children’s Foundation’s Toy Express will deliver more than 250,000 free toys and masks to first responder agencies and hospitals which will then distribute the holiday cheer to children of first responders and to children in first responder communities.  Every child will also receive a mask with their toy.

“We’re saying happy holidays and thank you to the heroic first responders who show up when we dial 911,” said Jillian Crane, President of First Responders Children’s Foundation.  “Toy Express will help make a happy holiday for the children of our first responders which include nurses, firefighters, police officers, EMTs, paramedics, medical personnel, and 911 dispatchers.  Our first responders are on the frontlines of the pandemic, and they continue to risk their own health every day in selfless service to their local communities across the country.  So, please help us help them.  You can send toys & masks at 1stRCF.org or by texting TOY to 24-365.”

First Responders Children’s Foundation established the Toy Express with a generous toy donation worth more than $1,000,000 in retail value from Mattel and American Girl including 5,000 signature 18” American Girl dolls and more than 45,000 in other Mattel products such as Hot Wheels®, Barbie® and Mega Bloks®. Additional sponsors include CSX, Good360, Hess Toy Truck, Jakks Pacific, MaskUSA.com, and Toys for Tots.  In addition, generous individuals across the nation are helping bring holiday cheer to first responder families by making donations of toys and money. Transportation of toys and masks across the country is coordinated and provided by Total Quality Logistics (TQL) and their Moves that Matter program.

First Responders Children’s Foundation began in the wake of 9/11 when Founder and Chairman, Alfred R. Kahn, hosted the first annual Thanksgiving Day Parade Breakfast just weeks after the 9/11 attacks.  That year, more than 800 children and family members of first responders lost in the line of duty were invited to watch the Thanksgiving Day Parade from private, front-row viewing which began an annual tradition of welcoming devastated first responder families into a supportive environment to face the challenges of the start of a holiday season without a loved one.  19 years later, the Foundation continues to support the families of first responders across the country with critical assistance including college scholarships and financial grants including paying for funeral bills of first responders who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their community.  During the 2020 pandemic, the Foundation has assisted more than 677,638 first responders through its Emergency Response Fund.  This holiday season, First Responders Children’s Foundation’s Toy Express will help provide cheer and happiness to children and families of first responders. Media assets for Toy Express can be found at https://1strcf.org/toy-express/.

Media Contact: First Responders Children’s Foundation
Joanna Black
+1 (646) 912-2681
Joanna@1stRCF.org

About First Responders Children’s Foundation

For almost 20 years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has been providing college scholarships to the children of first responder parents who have been injured or lost in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports, promotes, and facilitates educational activities and programs created and operated by first responder organizations to benefit children or the communities in which they live. The First Responders Children’s Foundation Emergency Response Fund was established in March, 2020 to provide financial hardship grants, PPE, and hotel accommodations to first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. The Foundation also pays for funerals of first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org.  Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION PAYS TRIBUTE TO FIRST RESPONDERS ON NATIONAL FIRST RESPONDERS DAY

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FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION PAYS TRIBUTE TO FIRST RESPONDERS ON NATIONAL FIRST RESPONDERS DAY

Messages from Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City first responder officials. A PSA released by Alan Jackson and Caylee Hammock in honor of first responders. A special Citation awarded by State of New York to the Foundation.

NEW YORK, NY (October 28, 2019) – Today, First Responders Children’s Foundation paid tribute to the nation’s first responders on National First Responders Day at America’s Response Monument at Liberty Park in New York.   A letter from Governor Andrew Cuomo was read to the audience, and messages of thanks to first responders across America were shared by first responder officials including FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro; NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison; Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Deputy Superintendent Louis Klock, and New York City Health & Hospitals Chief Nurse Executive Natalia Cineas.

 Jillian Crane, President of First Responders Children’s Foundation thanked first responders and read a letter addressed to first responders scribed by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo.

Its a pleasure to send greetings to all gathered in celebration of National First Responders Day hosted by First Responders Childrens Foundation.

This is an important day–one that aptly honors the brave men and women who put other lives ahead of their own when they step out onto the frontlines. On behalf of all New Yorkers, I am proud to offer my profound gratitude to these heroic first responders for their noble service and sacrifice. From our paramedics, EMTs, firefighters, and police officers, to our 911 dispatchers and medical personnel, we are blessed with extraordinarily courageous individuals, committed to protecting others despite risks to their own health and safety. In todays unprecedented times, their dedication has not wavered, and we are forever indebted.

Thank you to First Responders Childrens Foundation for providing us all with the opportunity to pay tribute to our brave and selfless first responders. I commend all affiliated with the Foundation for your dedication to providing support to these men and women and their families through tragic circumstances and extend best wishes for a wonderful celebration.

With gratitude. Sincerely, Andrew M. Cuomo”

First Responder Children’s Foundation Hero Awards were presented to several first responders who accepted the awards on behalf of all first responders across America. The Foundation’s “Roll Call of Heroes” included Detective Gloria Felix, Firefighter Kinga Mielnik, Paramedic Lieutenant Esmerelda Pepper-Gonzalez, Doctor Tanzib Hossain, Registered Nurse Geraldine Canlas and Patient Care Technician Ramona Torres. 

The goal of the Foundation is to make National First Responders Day a prominent national holiday across the country, and a special Citation was issued by Governor Cuomo on behalf of the State of New York to the First Responders Children’s Foundation in honor of its commitment to first responders during tragic circumstances and unprecedented challenges.

First Responders Children’s Foundation also launched a PSA to honor first responders. The Foundation worked closely with Universal Music Group Nashville to integrate a timely rendition of the classic Don Williams song “Lord, I Hope This Day is Good” by Caylee Hammack and Alan Jackson with vivid images of hardworking first responder heroes—firefighters, police officers, paramedics, EMTs, doctors, nurses, coast guard, 911 dispatchers—who faithfully answer the call to every emergency, and are always ready to help others. The PSA is available for download here

Video recordings and photographs of The First Responders Children’s Foundation National First Responders Day Tribute can be found here. A recording of the livestream can be found here.

For almost twenty years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has provided scholarships to children of first responders who have been injured or lost in the line of duty.  The Foundation also provides emergency grants to first responder families facing financial hardship and community grants to first responder agencies.  In response to COVID-19, the Foundation launched the Emergency Response Fund.  Over the past seven months, the Foundation has supported and continues to offer assistance to first responders nationwide in several ways, including:

  • Funding 12,946 hotel room nights and meal stipends so first responders don’t have to risk infecting their families and / or can self-quarantine.
  • Awarding $8.6 million in grants to 8,646 first responders in all 50 states who have experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19.
  • Distributing 656,000 FDA-certified, surgical-grade masks and additional PPE to first responder agencies.
  • Paying for 109 funerals of first responders who died from COVID-19.

First Responders Children’s Foundation continues to respond to first responders’ needs across the country and is currently fundraising to pay for 63 first responder COVID-related funerals and over 8,000 requests for emergency financial assistance from first responders

Media Contact: First Responders Children’s Foundation
Joanna Black
+1 (646) 912-2681
Joanna@1stRCF.org

About First Responders Children’s Foundation

For almost 20 years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has been providing college scholarships to the children of first responder parents who have been injured or lost in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports, promotes, and facilitates educational activities and programs created and operated by first responder organizations to benefit children or the communities in which they live. The First Responders Children’s Foundation Emergency Response Fund was established in March, 2020 to provide financial hardship grants, PPE, and hotel accommodations to first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. The Foundation also pays for funerals of first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org.  Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

How We’re Helping First Responders

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How We’re Helping First Responders

Elton-John-Iheart-radio-concert

COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund

First Responders Children’s Foundation was established almost two decades ago in order to support the families of the First Responders who lost their lives in the wake of 9/11. This year another tragedy struck, and in March, the Foundation established the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund through the support of CSX’s Pride in Service initiative.

iHeart Living Room Concert for America

Soon after launching our pandemic response initiative, we garnered national attention thanks to Fox Entertainment and iHeart Media. The “iHeart Living Room Concert for America” hosted by Sir Elton John and presented by Fox helped us raise over $1 million iin donations from both individuals and companies to help families of front-line workers.

As a one-hour TV special supporting the foundation, the concert was broadcast twice in prime time and attracted 8.7 million viewers. Featured stars included Elton John, Billie Eilish, Lady Gaga, Mariah Carey, Tim McGraw, Alicia Keys, Camila Cabello, Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters, the Backstreet Boys, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, and Ellen.

Our Partnerships

We would like to thank Fox for making a considerable monetary donation and to all the corporate donors that followed suit including Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Allstate Foundation, Belk’s, Bloomingdale’s, Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, E&J Gallo Wine, iMedia Brands (ShopHQ), Motorola, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Proctor and Gamble, The Rite Aid Foundation, and Ryan’s World.

Ryan Seacrest, who also made an appearance on the concert, donated hotel rooms and PPE for First Responders and recorded a public service announcement for television and radio. Cisco, a longtime supporter of the Foundation, also made a significant donation to fund financial hardship grants. 

Companies both big and small have launched their own fundraising efforts to help support our cause. Two women-owned businesses have collectively raised over a hundred thousand dollars for the Foundation. Erin Condren, a women-led lifestyle brand, has donated 40% of the proceeds of their fashionable adult and children’s masks. ALEX & ANI, a women’s jewelry company, designed charm bracelets to support our frontline and healthcare heroes by donating a percentage of sales to the Foundation. During this promotion, Alex & Ani and the Foundation worked together to honor several of our country’s female heroes on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic by gifting the bracelets.

We have seen firsthand how cents can add up too. Both Bloomingdale’s and Belk’s department stores asked customers to round-up at the register, and those cents totaled thousands of dollars. Doing good by rounding-up has helped us continue our mission of supporting the brave firefighters, police officers, EMTs and medical professionals who are facing unprecedented hardship.

The Power of Song

The 2020 VMA-winning, #1 hit single “Stuck with U,” by Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber, brought international attention to the Foundation with their heartfelt yet upbeat take on life in quarantine. Some of our very own First Responder grantees were featured in the song’s music video, which took home the “Best Music Video From Home” award, a debut category at the VMAs. Thank you to Ariana, Justin and the entire team at SB Projects, as well as to all the First Responder families who made appearances in the award-winning video. 

In fact, many artists have come together to support the Foundation. A big thank you to Alicia Keys for donating her song “Underdog” for use in a PSA, and to Academy Award-winning composer Franke Previte for donating sales of his song, “One World,” to the Foundation. 

You can kick back and listen to these songs by visiting 1stRCF.org, and be sure to be on the lookout for exciting news in weeks ahead when we announce donations made from single sales of “Stuck with U”!

PPE to the Front Lines of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The First Responders Children’s Foundation Mask & PPE Project provides life-saving masks and other PPE–personal protective equipment–to First Responders on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic in record delivery times. The Foundation has engaged its network of First Responders across the country to create a new and highly efficient supply chain for our FDA-certified, medical grade masks and other much needed PPE. We ship to every state, including nursing homes, hospitals, public safety agencies and fire stations both big and small.

To date, we have distributed over 650,000 surgical grade masks, 4,500 face shields, 6,100 hand sanitizers, 4,000 cotton microbial masks and 2,600 first responders care packages. This staggering response was made possible with the help of Mask Club, DonatePPE, Warner Bros., Sewby, Masqd, Eminence Organic Skincare, Proper Cloth, The Octex Group, and Ford Motor Company.

Front-lnes-pandemic

FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES CSX PRIDE IN SERVICE SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS

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FIRST RESPONDERS CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES CSX PRIDE IN SERVICE SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS

The Foundation awards 94 scholarships to youth from across the country to pursue post-secondary education

NEW YORK, NY (October 8, 2020) – Today, First Responders Children’s Foundation (FRCF), a nonprofit organization that supports children of first responders and their families, and CSX, a premier transportation company, announce the CSX Pride in Service Scholarship recipients for the 2020/2021 academic year.

There are a total of 94 new and returning scholars residing in CSX’s 23-state operational network. The CSX Pride in Service Scholarships have been awarded to children of first responders, many of whom have been killed or injured in the line of duty. Each scholar is awarded up to $6,250 for a single academic year. Awards are based on financial need as well as academic merit, demonstrated leadership, outstanding performance in the arts or sports and community volunteerism. Recipients are encouraged to reapply annually for a maximum of four years.

“On behalf of First Responders Children’s Foundation, I would like to congratulate all of the CSX Pride in Service scholars for pursuing a college education,” said Jillian Crane, President of First Responders Children’s Foundation. “These young people are the future of our country and we are proud of their passion, resilience and commitment to attaining a degree during these challenging times.”

Upon hearing the news of their award, a number of recipients have reached out to First Responders Children’s Foundation with heartfelt notes of gratitude. Madison Harris, a recipient attending University of Virginia, Class of 2025, wrote:

“Thank you, First Responders Children’s Foundation as well as CSX for awarding me $2,500 for the CSX Pride in Service Scholarship! I am very honored and appreciative to have been selected. I will continue pushing myself to keep up my grades, give back to the community and do my best to make a difference!”

Thomas Caputo recorded a video message to express his thoughts on winning the scholarship. Thomas comes from a long lineage of first responders, including his grandfather and uncle, both of whom passed on 9/11. In addition, his father is suffering from a 9/11-related illness. In his message, Thomas shares how his choice to pursue nursing at Villanova University was shaped by his family’s commitment to service and the ultimate sacrifices his family made on that fateful day.

The CSX Pride in Service scholars come from diverse backgrounds and are pursuing a range of academic disciplines including accounting, economics, engineering, finance, history, illustration, marketing, nursing, theology and wildlife conservation.

“Congratulations to all CSX Pride in Service Scholarship recipients,” said Bryan Tucker, vice president of corporate communications at CSX. “When we launched CSX Pride in Service two years ago, we set out to provide critical financial assistance to first responders and their families, including support for their children’s academic pursuits. We are proud to have a hand in helping 94 additional children of first responders pursue their dreams this year.”

FRCF is accepting scholarship applications on a rolling basis. Children of first responders who are attending or plan to attend a post-secondary institution can learn more and apply at www.1strcf.org.

Media Contact: First Responders Children’s Foundation
Joanna Black
+1 (646) 912-2681
Joanna@1stRCF.org

CSX Media Relations
+1 (855) 955-6397
mediateam@csx.com

About First Responders Children’s Foundation
For almost 20 years, First Responders Children’s Foundation has been providing college scholarships to the children of first responder parents who have been injured or lost in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports, promotes, and facilitates educational activities and programs created and operated by first responder organizations to benefit children or the communities in which they live. The First Responders Children’s Foundation Emergency Response Fund was established in March, 2020 to provide financial hardship grants, PPE, and hotel accommodations to first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. The Foundation also pays for funerals of first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org. Follow First Responders Children’s Foundation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.

About CSX
CSX, based in Jacksonville, Florida, is a premier transportation company. It provides rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services and solutions to customers across a broad array of markets, including energy, industrial, construction, agricultural and consumer products. For nearly 200 years, CSX has played a critical role in the nation’s economic expansion and industrial development.  Its network connects every major metropolitan area in the eastern United States, where nearly two-thirds of the nation’s population resides.  It also links more than 230 short-line railroads and more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports with major population centers and farming towns alike. For more information, visit csx.com.

Bringing in Women’s History Month With Police Chief Renee Hall

Renee Hall Black Female Police Chief Dalllas

March 1st marks the official end of Black History Month and the beginning of Women’s History Month, months set aside to remember and honor the contributions prominent African Americans and women have had on American society. It is a time to reflect on not only how far we’ve come toward ensuring equal rights and opportunities for all people, regardless of their race and gender, but also how far we have left to go. Although only two months are officially designated for such exercises, reflecting on the contributions African Americans and women have made, and continue to make on our great nation, is a practice that should be ongoing throughout the entire year.

In the spirit of the passing of Black of History Month, the beginning of Women’s History Month and the ongoing importance of acknowledging all that our African American and female citizens do to make this country great, I would like to take a moment to highlight an inspirational individual who I came across in an article published in D Magazine: Police Chief Renee Hall. From humble beginnings in Detroit, Renee Hall has overcome many obstacles to become the first female police chief in Dallas, TX. Her father, Ulysses Brown, was a police officer killed in the line of duty when she was merely 6 months old. Her mother often struggled to make ends meet as she raised three children while working at a General Motors plant. Despite these unfortunate limitations, Ms. Hall found the inner strength to excel in school and as a member of the police force in Detroit, where she quickly rose in the ranks.

Today, Renee Hall faces very different challenges. Despite having excelled throughout her career in Detroit and being well-qualified for her new role, she has been met with both underlying and overt opposition to her appointment as the new police chief in Dallas. Her position places her in a role typically dominated by men, in a city, which, as Ms. Hall describes, “historically dislikes black people for no reason at all-other than the fact that they’re black.” Regardless, Renee Hall has found the strength to continue to overcome all the challenges put in her path and has slowly been gaining the respect and admiration of both her department and her community. She embodies the fortitude and resilience demonstrated by many great African American and female leaders and revolutionaries preceding her and her attitude and accomplishments should serve as an inspiration to all.

For more information on Renee Hall, I encourage you to read the article I came across in D Magazine, which can be found by clicking the following link: 

D Magazine “This Is The New Chief Of Police” May 2018

Dallas Police Chief, Renee Hall
Post written by Dan Krohn. Original article by Jaime Thomson, Photography by Elizabeth Lavin