What is the Firefighter Cancer Support Network?

By Joel Calfee for Lion Connects

A dream of Mike Dubron, a Los Angeles County firefighter and the founder of the Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN), started with coffee talk during a shift change after surviving his own personal battle with cancer. For him, talking to other people, especially those who had been diagnosed with the same kind of cancer he was battling, brought him comfort, strength and hope.

Founded in 2005 by a group of cancer survivors, caregivers, advocates and volunteers, the FCSN was formed as a 501 (C) (3) nonprofit program organization funded by tax-deductible donations. The mission of the Firefighter Cancer Support Network is to provide active and retired fire department members and their families an opportunity to receive assistance when dealing with cancer with the objective of providing timely assistance when diagnosed. The FCSN continues to grow throughout the world promoting firefighters with program awareness, education, information library, mentorship, advocates, comfort and support, special events and a regional coordinator program.

We have mentors from the fire service to share insight into how they dealt with cancer in which you or someone you know have been diagnosed.  Arrangements will be made through the FCSN’s wellness coordinator for various forms of assistance, such as providing a “tool box” of information for those recently diagnosed.

We encourage anyone requesting assistance to become a member prior to FCSN sending out information. There is no membership fee, and it can be easily done on our website. You can also become a friend of the FCSN by joining the network. We are always looking for assistance from volunteers in helping get the message out and supporting the network.

If you need assistance or want to help we may be contacted by internet www.FirefighterCancerSupport.org, by e-mail on the “Contact Us” page or by phone 866-994-FCSN.

We can “Fight Cancer With Fire,” and “Together We Can Make A Difference.” Remember, cancer does not discriminate, so protect yourself, your coworkers and your family.

For more information, please visit us on the web.

Until then, remember to stay low, stay cool and be safe.

(Editor’s note: Joel Calfee is the Health and Safety Chairman of the IAFF Local 341 in Houston, a member of the Houston Fire Department and the Texas Regional Director of the Firefighter Cancer Support Network.)