Friday, December 15, 2017
(Photo by Kevin Buchanan)

C.O.D.E. 4: Helping First Responders Transition To Civilian Life

(VVNEWS.com)-Retirement can be a difficult task to accomplish after a career as a first responder. Psychologists have said that in order to handle change, staying busy and having the right peer support is critical in maintaining one’s physical and mental health when one chapter closes, another one opens. The hardest part sometimes is getting through the process.

The 501(c) support organization C.O.D.E 4 was founded in 2015 by Amanda Betten who is a medically retired San Bernardino County Deputy Sheriff and Mark Durmisevich a retired Fontana Police Department Officer.

Comprised of membership from different agencies and departments, it’s open to all first responders who are about to retire or have retired, or are in the process of a job change. “C.O.D.E 4 helps to make the transition easier by a strong network of support” according to Betten. ” C.O.D.E 4 stands for Community, Outreach, Discussion, and Education,” said Betten.

“To improve lives by engaging a network of education, resources, and support” is the mission statement of C.O.D.E 4.

Albert Lobo realized he needed a strong support system after falling ill. Lobo acquired sepsis while working for the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department; leading to the amputation of both legs, left arm at the bicep, and all the fingers of his right hand. After surviving, C.O.D.E 4 became a huge support system in his life. He now works with other individuals in their own battles and has been an inspiration to members of C.O.D.E 4.

“I have experience and knowledge in providing peer support to those who are battling their injuries.” Says Lobo.

Monthly meetings are held the 3rd Monday of each month at 6:00PM at 22799 Palm Ave. Grand Terrace, CA 92313. New members are always welcome and encouraged to attend. Also, persons may call 951-217-6949 for more information.

You do not have to be a fully retired First Responder to join C.O.D.E 4. They believe in offering a sense of belonging and pride in a job well done, no matter what length of service, according to the group’s webpage code4inc.org/. As Mark Durmisevich says, “We’ve got your six!”

About Kevin Buchanan

For 45 years Kevin has lived and worked in the High Desert of California. He is a singer-songwriter with two albums to his name and resides in Hesperia.

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