FAMU professor aids in mental health recovery following Surfside condo collapse
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Kellie O’Dare traveled with Tallahassee’s Task Force 7, who is assisting and searching for survivors at the Surfside condo collapse site as the death toll now rises to 20.
In addition to being a professor at FAMU, O’Dare is also the Director and Founder of Second Alarm Project, which addresses mental health needs of first responders across our area.
In Surfside, she is working with peer support teams where the first responders serve as the bridge, looking for signs of distress and talking to one another during these times.
O’Dare told WCTV that just providing emotional support is crucial as rescuers work to get the job done.
“This is a tremendous tragedy,” said O’Dare. “It’s unexpected, which is psychologically damaging to a lot of people, but after the shock wore off the plans were set in motion and the USAR teams got here and the work began, and as of now, everyone is just linking arms and working together to get the job done.”
O’dare said the firefighters are working 24/7 no matter what the weather brings.
It’s unclear when Task Force 7 will return to Tallahassee, but O’dare said she will back sometime next week.
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