In 1999 one of our members was struck down with a brain aneurysm. The initial prognosis by the doctors was uncertain. It’s times like these that we realize how important it is to have our families close. It was immediately clear that this member needed to have a family member, who lived in Texas, by her side. The family member could not afford the high price of the last-minute travel. The brothers and sisters of the Alexandria Firefighters Local 2141 pulled together and covered the high cost of those travel expenses. Members dug into their pockets to ensure the family had no other burdens in their time of need. Thankfully everything turned out for the best and our member returned to full duty.
This sudden event brought to light the need to develop a fund that would be available in any of our member’s time of need. Relief Funds are not uncommon within public safety; many fire departments have created similar funds to help their members when sudden and tragic events like this strike their membership. The Alexandria Firefighters Helping Hands Relief Fund (HHRF) was established. The HHRF conducted many fundraising events to get the fund up and operational. The intent of the HHRF is to continue to build the fund to support current and future members in the years to come.
When a sudden or tragic event like the one described above occurs there is no time for “red tape” and/or politics. Whether the event was job-related or not, the HHRF fund is there. The HHRF is intended to take care of those items often left behind or forgotten, such things as emergency travel for family members, food, lodging, and childcare to name a few.
How the HHRF Works
The HHRF has developed a partnership with many community and business leaders. Those leaders along with members of our IAFF Local union make up the fund’s Board of Directors. The Board of Directors is made up of five (5) community members and two (2) Local 2141 members.
The current Board of Directors are: Bryan Porter (Chairman), Chad Lallier (Exec Board and L2141 member), Bill Cleveland, and Mike Chandler (L2141). The board oversees the fund, allowing it to grow and move in a forward direction. The HHRF hopes that having people like this on our board will bring better recognition to the cause and allow for positive growth.
We have a set policy for this fund. The Board of Directors has full authority over the fund. Board meetings are held on a quarterly basis, or as needed, to handle all requests for assistance as well as planning of future fund-raisers.
How to Contribute
The Helping Hand Relief Fund holds periodic fundraisers throughout the year within the community through the Alexandria Professional Firefighters Local 2141 as well as local business partners. The HHRF also accepts your donations year-round. Download a donation form and make your contribution today.
Donations are not tax-deductible.
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