Providing Support to First Responders of Champlain Towers Collapse

By Elena Hoyos, Administrative Services Director, The Village South

On June 24, 2021, Champlain Towers South, a 12-story beachfront condominium in the Miami suburb of Surfside, FL, partially collapsed.

Hundreds of individuals and families were affected, including 98 lives lost. In the days and weeks after the collapse, determined and heroic rescue workers and first responders worked tirelessly moving millions of pounds of debris looking for survivors. The teams worked long shifts putting their own safety on the line working in dangerous conditions that resemble a warzone more than a normal search and rescue mission. In the aftermath of something traumatic like this, there is so much loss, grief, sadness, and even anger. These levels of stress can make first responders vulnerable to PTSD and other mental health conditions like depression.

The Village South worked in coordination with Miami Dade Emergency Management to provide crisis intervention and mental health services to first responders and families affected during this tragedy.

Family therapy, individual therapy, care coordination, community-based outreach, and psychoeducational services were offered to adults who exhibited symptoms of trauma. 

The Village South’s licensed clinicians explored the stages of grief to provide everyone with a healthier resolution to their suffering – including addressing compassion fatigue and/or burnout, which could potentially interfere with daily functioning.

As of today, The Village South continues to work diligently to make all services available to those affected by this unforeseen tragedy. It is in extraordinary times that Uplifting the Human Spirit and supporting our community are most important. 

By WestCare

We're a family of nonprofit organizations providing a wide spectrum of health and human services across the United States, 3 U.S. territories, and 2 Republics.

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