LINO LAKES, Minn. – (March 7, 2019) – On the ice, members of the fire departments and police departments faced off in hockey. Off the ice, thousands of dollars were raised at the third annual Guns vs. Hoses game. Each year, each law enforcement officers choose a different charity to support.
This year, they are supporting the Anoka County Peer Support Group. The group was founded in 1990 and is made of about thirty-five people who work in emergency response. Some are police officers; others are EMTs, or 911 dispatchers, firefighters or chaplains.
Incidents they respond to and help their colleagues with can vary a lot – difficult accidents, witnessing serious injuries, or death. No matter what the critical incident is, dispatchers and emergency responders see and hear difficult things as a part of their regular work.
The Anoka County Peer Support Group can also refer those responders to additional support groups or professional therapists to keep working through difficult events. They want to make sure that all emergency responders are getting all the emotional and mental health support that they need.
The funds raised by the hundreds of people who came out to support them at this hockey game will go a long way in continuing their work.
“These emergency responders, I can tell you as a chaplain, that these are some of the best men and women you’ll ever meet in your life. They are great people, they have a heart for their communities, and they are ready to serve when most of us would want to walk away,” said Pederson.
Hundreds of people came out to support the hockey game and raise thousands of dollars for the Anoka County Peer Support Group.
“Having these people show up for it, it’s just a heart-warming thing to know that there’s support for what we do in the communities.”