Fairfield Fire Department’s Clergy Team was organized by Fire Chief Don Bennet in an attempt to support citizens who encounter traumatic events within the community. Recognizing that tragedy is not a respecter of persons, Chief Bennet called upon the city’s clergy in December of 2000 to help establish an effective program in responding to the these particular crisis events. Church leaders rose to the challenge and established Fairfield’s first comprehensive chaplaincy program which assist first responders in emergency crisis.
The Clergy Team has been thoroughly trained in first responder’s protocol and critical incident stress management. They have clear goals for crisis intervention. Upon arriving to a scene, the team members seek to stabilize signs and symptoms of distress and dysfunction and then move to mitigate those signs and symptoms. Their goal is to facilitate a return to adaptive functioning or possibly assist by seeking continued care for both citizens and our uniformed employees and their families.
Clergy Team members are compassionate, competent, and qualified ministers within our community that have been ordained and/or licensed. These individuals manifest a broad base of experience and professional maturity, emotional stability and personal credibility within the church and community. Each team member possesses professional credentials and are participants in on going training to sharpen skill sets and bring continuity to the team’s performance and program.
To assure the citizens of Fairfield, Ohio receive the best possible care, the Fairfield Fire Department has adopted strict guidelines as to when, where, and how the Clergy Team is to be called upon to assist the department. Requests for assistance are initiated through our dispatch center and upon arrival at the scene, the responding clergy report directly to the Incident Commander.
Team members assist emergency responders and city personnel in a variety of ways. The Clergy Crisis Response Team is often called upon to:
- Make death or serious injury notification
- Comfort the victim(s) and/or their family at the scene of emergencies involving serious injury and/or death
- Assist confused or emotionally upset individuals
- Provide grief counseling and spiritual guidance
- Serve and facilitate appropriate needs
- Assist with attempted or potential suicide victims
- Represent the Fairfield Fire and Police Departments before official bodies and public functions
- Be available for the organization and spiritual development of the fire and police departments
- Serve as liaison with other religious leaders and organizations in the community
- Serve as liaison with the American Red Cross and other support agencies at major emergencies
- Provide support and counseling to city employees and their families
Chaplain Rob Rosenbalm has been a team member since the program’s inception and is currently serving as the director for the Clergy Team. Please forward all inquires to Chaplain Rosenbalm at the Fairfield Fire Department Headquarters, or leave a voicemail at 513-867-6090.