|Parx Casino presented the Lenape Valley Foundation with a $10,000 donation to assist with the operation of the Bucks County First Responder Peer Support Program, a 24/7 crisis hotline for police, firefighters and paramedics. Pictured (from left) are Angela Jacobsen, director of development, Lenape Valley Foundation; Sen. Tommy Tomlinson (R-Bucks); Sharon Curran, COO, Lenape Valley Foundation; Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks); Tony Ricci, CEO, Parx Casino; Michelle Saldutti, diversity coordinator, Parx Casino; and Ron Davis, director of diversity and community development, Parx Casino.
LANGHORNE – On Friday, Parx Casino presented the Lenape Valley Foundation with a $10,000 donation to assist with the operation of the Bucks County First Responder Peer Support Program, a 24/7 crisis hotline for police, firefighters, EMS and dispatchers, said Rep. Frank Farry (R-Bucks), who helped establish the hotline last year.
“As our Bucks County community has been flooded with sad and horrendous news recently, this donation is a bright spot,” Farry said. “Thank you to Parx and the Lenape Valley Foundation for the support and work you have done for our first responders in need.”
The 24/7 hotline serves all Bucks County first responders and their family members through the use of trained peer volunteer call takers.
Parx presented a ceremonial check to the Lenape Valley Foundation at Sen. Tommy Tomlinson (R-Bucks)’s Bensalem Township office.
“Parx Casino is proud to partner with the Lenape Valley Foundation to provide a much-needed program for those who serve and protect us in the community,” said Ron Davis, chief diversity and inclusion officer and director of community development for Parx Casino. “We appreciate the opportunity to support this outstanding initiative.”
Tomlinson, who was present for the presentation, helped to coordinate the donation.
“I would like thank Parx Casino for its continued support as a community partner in Bucks County,” Tomlinson said. “This money is going to help take care of our first responders, who have continuously and tirelessly dedicated themselves to our communities.”
The Lenape Valley Foundation confirmed the donation will be used to offset operational costs for the hotline’s first year.
“The Parx grant will help offset expenses for the first year of the hotline’s existence,” said Sharon Curran, chief operations officer for the Lenape Valley Foundation. “The hotline is staffed by first responder volunteers, but incurs expenses for equipment such as phones and computers for data collection. Lenape Valley Foundation is managing the volunteers and their training through the crisis program.”
Farry, who also serves as a volunteer firefighter and chief of the Langhorne-Middletown Fire Company, was inspired to help launch the crisis hotline in early 2017 after two Bucks County first responders committed suicide within a year. He hopes to expand the model into a statewide first responder crisis hotline.
“Our first responders save lives daily, but they also respond to many tragedies and that can really take a toll on someone’s mental well-being over time,” Farry said. “Within the first three months of this program, the hotline fielded seven calls, so there’s definitely a need. Our primary goal is to continue providing help here in Bucks County, but ultimately, I’d like to see these services available to first responders across the state. That’s something I’m working on in Harrisburg.”
For those in need of help, the hotline numbers are law enforcement: 267-893-5200 and first responders: 267-893-5400. For more information, visit lenapevf.org
Representative Frank Farry
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Abbey Haslam