The stress and trauma that first responders experience can build up if it isn’t addressed. The city of Huntington, West Virginia, is focusing on this concern with COMPASS, a wellness program that provides first responders and their families with mental and physical health services.
It began with a grant of a million dollars through the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge. The city also received additional funding from private organizations such as AT&T and non-profits like the Pallottine Foundation and the Tri-State Foundation.
The COMPASS Wellness center was established on the 5th floor of the Jean Dean Public Safety Building, the same building housing the Huntington Police Department. Today, the program provides first responders a gym, lounge, sauna, meditation room, and a robust kitchen.