FirefighterAid is the 501(c)(3) fund managed by San Diego Fireman's Relief Association for the sole purpose of providing charitable assistance to Firefighters and families in crisis. FirefighterAid is supported entirely by donations from SDFRA members and the general public. We need the support of our community to continue caring for firefighters and families through sickness, distress, and death.
For over 100 years, the San Diego Fireman's Relief Association has been providing for the protection, care, and relief of the members of the San Diego Fire Department. In 1990, the association founded the Benevolent Fund to provide a channel for public support as the need continued to increase.
Upon it's founding, this new 501(c)(3) charity was called "The Widows, Orphans, and Distressed Firefighters Fund" in an attempt to reflect the mission and purpose for which the fund was created. A few years later, the name was shortened again to "The San Diego Firefighters Benevolent Fund".
As of 2012, we are changing the name again to something that communicates our core purpose: FirefighterAid. FirefighterAid became trademarked in late 2011 and in 2012, we are officially filing for a name change with the Federal and State governments.
As a charity, FirefighterAid is unique and offers something many similar organizations cannot. Operating costs of FirefighterAid are paid by the members of the San Diego Fireman's Relief Association, allowing nearly 100% of donated funds to go directly to providing critical support for Firefighters and families in distress.
While serving our mission over the last several decades we have also reached out to the community of San Diego and the public by:
- delivering meals and gifts to elderly citizens living alone
- teaming up with other organizations such as Ronald McDonald House
to prepare meals for children and families
- visiting sick children in the hospital
- providing education about fire safety
The programs of FirefighterAid require support from donors like you to continue serving our firefighters and families through difficult times.
Fire Family Services, our largest, most encompassing program, coordinates a range of assistance for Firefighters and their families during times of extreme distress:
When firefighters make the ultimate sacrifice, whether in the course of their duty or years later because of the health risks they accepted, The Last Alarm is there for their families.
The Last Alarm provides bereavement and funerary support to widows, orphans, and family members of a deceased firefighter. Program representatives ensure that grieving families receive the support they need, while also helping to honor the life and service of the hero they mourn.
The Last Alarm honors the lives lost on September 11th, 2001 with the annual event The San Diego 9-11 Memorial Stair Climb. Read about the stairclimb or find out how to participate on the stairclimb page.
Aging Heroes is a program of SDFRA which provides supportive care and resources to
These elder community servants have been exposed to significant health hazards before modern safety equipment. Many are shut-ins and do not have the social or practical support necessary to meet their most basic needs, such as transporation to doctors appointments, meals, handicapped accessible homes, and more.
Aging Heroes ensures that these elder servants do not slip through the cracks.
Fire Scholars provides merit scholarships for outstanding college-bound students.
Applicants submit an application package, an essay on a designated topic, and must meet stringent criteria for academic excellence.
Upon receipt, all identifying information is removed from scholarship applications and essays. These are sent to an independent third party educational authority for evaluation and final scoring.
Winners are presented with their awards at our annual scholarship luncheon.
Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to FirefighterAid to keep our programs running and serving those who serve.