Four nonprofits helping first responders and their families

In honor of 9/11, here is a sampling of Give Lively member nonprofits supporting first responders across the country.
September 11, 2023
Clair Lofthouse
Technical Writer

“If we learn nothing else from this tragedy, we learn that life is short, and there is no time for hate.”
- Sandy Dahl, wife of United Flight 93 pilot Jason Dahl

It is a struggle to write about the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. I remember sitting in front of the TV after early release from elementary school. As naive as it sounds today when school is too-often interrupted by active shooters, the shock of learning at that time that a normal Tuesday could turn into life or death at a moment’s notice made a lasting impression on me, despite being thousands of miles away. 

Even at that young age, I recognized the people on the shaky news footage who were running toward the epicenter, not away. I recognized that this was their job and that there were others across the country whose job it was when tragedy struck elsewhere. It came with a grim, glamor-shattering realization of what being a first responder could mean. My conclusion: one doesn’t run towards danger for a job, but perhaps for a calling.  

Still today, I find myself awed by the selflessness of those who, regardless of political affiliation, religion or ethnicity, ran toward the World Trade Center buildings. 

Twenty-two years later, first responders who were there are still sacrificing. A recent article published on ABC News shares that the death toll attributed to the events of 9/11 continues to grow. “The New York City Fire Department has added 43 new names to its World Trade Center Memorial Wall commemorating firefighters, paramedics and civilian support staff members who have died from illnesses related to the rescue and recovery efforts in the aftermath of one of the darkest days in U.S. history.” 

Today we share a sampling of the many Give Lively member nonprofits supporting first responders across the country.

The nonprofits

All Clear Foundation

This member nonprofit’s mission is to improve the overall well-being and longevity of those who serve our communities in times of need – from hire through retirement. It believes that healthy emergency responders contribute to healthier communities. The All Clear Foundation is committed to providing career and volunteer emergency response communities with an easily accessible and navigable system of support tools. The All Clear Foundation understands how the daily demands of duty can take a toll on those who serve (and their loved ones), whether as a healthcare worker or field responder (EMS, fire, law enforcement, dispatch, disaster response and others trained specifically to support our communities).

Cornerstone Therapeutic Riding Center

This nonprofit organization is dedicated to enriching the lives of wounded and recovering service members, veterans, first responders and their families. Since 2008, Cornerstone has been providing programs and services developed specifically for all who have sacrificed and served. Cornerstone’s PATH-certified instructors (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) those in need recover from a myriad of emotional and mental health challenges as a result of their time in service. Therapeutic riding offers a wide array of benefits and has become widely accepted by medical doctors, along with physical and occupational therapists, as a viable and highly successful form of therapy.

Cornerstone used a Give Lively-powered Campaign Page to raise over $44,000 during the 2022 Black Tie & Boots Annual Charity Gala.

Firefighter Cancer Support Network

Since 2005, the nonprofit Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN) has provided assistance and one-on-one mentoring to thousands of cancer-stricken firefighters and their families. According to data from the International Association of Fire Fighters, occupational cancer caused 65% of the career firefighter line-of-duty deaths from January 1, 2002, to December 31, 2021. FCSN works to lower that number through free resources and support, one-on-one mentorship and extensive firefighter cancer awareness and prevention training nationwide. FCSN also works directly with many leading cancer physicians, research scientists and institutes to gather and report the prevalence of cancer among members of the fire service. 

Wildland Firefighter Foundation

Officially formed in 1999, this nonprofit’s main focus is to help families of firefighters killed in the line of duty and to assist injured firefighters and their families. The Wildland Firefighter Foundation provides immediate financial and crisis assistance to families of fallen and injured wildland firefighters, partners with agencies and others to work toward preventing line-of-duty deaths. It also maintains the Wildland Firefighters National Monument at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho.