The Rolling Barrage PTSD Foundation

Mission 

Create and maintain a community of support for veterans, serving Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members, first responders, and the Safety Community, to show strength and unity, and to combat the effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  TRB will raise funds to support programs and organizations that provide assistance to those who serve our country.

Vision

Become the largest Canadian coast-to-coast rolling support network, that will increase mental health resilience.  Create a community that allows people to find trust, connection, and understanding. 

Goals and Ethos

  • Raise Awareness to End the Stigma of PTSD – Our mantra “it is not a disorder or a disease, it is an injury sustained from the traumas of one’s duty to protecting Canada and her citizens.”

Ultimately we’d like change the last letter of PTSD from a “D” to an “I”.

If you have a Post-Traumatic Stress Injury; Operational/Occupational Stress Injury (PTSI/OSI), then you’re not broken; your brain IS wired correctly; you’re hurt from your experiences that don’t align with a proper moral compass. 

Therefore, we will only use PTSD in our main taglines (“Combat PTSD”, “End the Stigma of PTSD”).  Herein, we refer to, and push for the classification, of it as PTSI/OSI.  We also made the focal shift to empower our injured compatriots, by euphemizing “living with or healing from PTSI” vice suffering with/from it. 

  • Foster Inclusivity – “Not all wounds are visible; not all wounds are military.”

This ride is open to ALL riders and not just military in nature.  In fact, we openly invite civilian riders, as a way to show resounding support for our troops and those within the Safety Community, who answer the call to protect Canada every day regardless of their attire (a uniform, “scrubs” or civilian clothes). 

  • Generate Funds to Advance Research and Promote Healing – At the end of every ride, TRB’s Board of Directors and Executive Officers decide how to use the donations raised in the following ways:

      • Sponsor the recovery efforts of individuals by paying for them to get help; or
      • Donate money, services, and equipment to organizations and activities that are aligned with our goals and values, as well as focussed on and understand the needs of “Canada’s Guardians”.

We remain true to our grassroots heritage, yet strive for evidence-based results from transparent entities, who are aligned with our values. 

Our plan for the future and the goals that we have set are not inexpensive endeavours.  As such, we still happily accept support from the basic cadre of patrons, we have made the move to partner with a major benefactor. 

Each year, recipients are reviewed and applicants are vetted, prior to making our list.  They must have a clinical PTSI/OSI diagnosis and be seeking help from recognized providers.

Anyone is free to donate to us as a private citizen, organization, or company.  Donors are also vetted and reviewed annually, for transparency and value alignment , before they are put on our sponsor lists. 

  • Stop the Tragic Loss of Life – Many of us have felt the loss felt when someone dear (be it a friend family member or loved one).  The empty sense of senselessness is exacerbated when that person passes by their own hand.

The numbers of service personnel who lose the battle with their PTSIs/OSIs is staggering.  We encourage veterans, serving CAF members, first responders, and to get together.  In Canada*, male veterans are 1.4 times and female veterans are 1.9 times more likely to take their own life than other Canadians.

* – Statistics taken from the Veteran Affairs Canada 2019 Veteran Suicide Mortality Study (https://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/about-vac/research/research-directorate/publications/reports/veteran-suicide-mortality-study-2019-summary

Belonging is significant in any healing and this will show that spirit across the nation.  We encourage veterans, serving CAF members, first responders, and the Safety Community to interact during the ride and throughout the year.  Our members build strong alliances from our common roots of service and protecting Canada. 

We have seen these bonds build immediately, as those who were very guarded and introverted open up over the course of a leg.  Of course there are those that take longer; sometimes that opening takes the whole event or happens within a couple years. 

Regardless, when the bonds build, they’re as strong as the camaraderie felt during our service.  Now the service is focused on each other and healing.

  • Creatand Confirm a Sheepdog Society Starting within our own ranks we will develop certified Peer Supporters.

These people will be on hand to provide our participants or those who interact with us peer support during our annual fundraising ride and during other events and activities that we hold throughout the rest of the year.

Our plan is to have support events, not just fundraising, yet some may go hand-in-hand.

We will also divert some of the funds we raise to provide training and certification of other Peer Supporters for the entities we support.

  • Develop a Rolling Support Network and Therapy Event – “Guess why you don’t see a motorcycle outside a psychiatrist’s office…I’m going for some Throttle/Wind Therapy.”

PTSI/OSI has a myriad of symptoms and effects.  Some of the manifestations are hypervigilance, guarding, negative self-image, poor self-esteem, poor judgement, intrusive memories, lack of feelings, hopelessness, lack of concentration, hopelessness, mistrust, isolation, dissociation.

Recognized therapy techniques for PTSI/OSI are mindfulness, resilience, awareness of surroundings, assessment/categorization of risks/hazards, managing increasing tasks, becoming one with the environment. 

Riding a motorcycle encourages a sense of ease and relaxation, has positive effects on mood, and also reduce stress and improve a person’s overall psychological well-being.  Motorcycling reduces symptoms of PTSI/OSI including depression reduces feeling of loneliness, which helps riders connect with other riders.  Riding with like-minded people helps those with PTSI/OSI build bonds with others.

It puts the hypervigilance to good use; forces mindfulness; improves risk awareness/mitigation techniques; and helps with cognitive difficulties by continuously engaging all five senses.

  • Gateway Certification and Accreditation – The above points are what we believe from what we have witnessed throughout our experiences and, in particular, over the past four years.

We are not clinicians engaged directly in the study of these points or weighing their merits, based upon evidential fact.  This is the main reason why TRB is moving to align with a recognized foundation or institute.

We’d like to participate in such a study that develops motorcycling (particularly Group Riding) and become recognized as an accredited mental health therapy event for the treatment of PTSIs/OSIs. 

Who We Support

All members (still serving and retired) of the CAF, Veterans, First Responders, & the associated Safety Communitywith one or more PTSIs/OSIs.

Following our pending restructure (Sep 2021), we will move to support more evidence-based therapies, align with a research- 

 

Please join us, this continues to be an unforgettable journey.