STAR Program

Arvada Fire’s STAR program launched in 2023 to expand and improve care to individuals experiencing behavioral health crisis, substance abuse, and/or homelessness in our community. 

The innovative program deploys a community support team consisting of a licensed mental health clinician and a firefighter paramedic. Both staff a discreet co-responder van and are dispatched  to calls involving behavioral health. The co-responder team provides crisis assessment and referral services, counseling, social services and resource navigation, and transportation to alternative destinations such as a crisis center if needed.

This new resource is being developed because behavioral health crises have steadily increased in recent years. In fact, responses to 911 calls for suicidal ideologies, overdoses, substance use disorders, mental illness, and other incidents involving severe anxiety and depression have more than doubled in the last three years.

Deploying a specialized community support team allows Arvada Fire to better respond to an individual’s immediate mental health needs. The firefighter paramedic’s role on the team is to rule out any underlying medical cause for a behavioral health crisis. The licensed clinician identifies appropriate pathways for care and connects the individual to services and resources that can improve their wellness. 

Nationally,  these service models have provided improved quality of care to those experiencing mental health emergencies while decreasing unnecessary arrests or hospitalizations. These models improve the availability of other agency resources, such as ambulances or fire apparatus that can return to service for other emergencies. The program also reduces costs for the agency by diminishing repetitive calls for service.  

The STAR program is made possible by a partnership between Arvada Fire and WellPower, a not-for-profit community mental health center known locally and nationally as a model for innovative and effective community behavioral health care.


  1. Crisis Resources
  2. Shelter Resources
  3. Online Therapy
  4. In-Person Therapy
  5. Other

Colorado Crisis Services

No matter what you’re going through, help is available. Call Colorado Crisis Services at 844-493-TALK (8255) or text TALK to 38255. Learn more at

Suicide Prevention - WellPower

We are devoted to addressing the growing need for suicide awareness and prevention. If you or someone you love is in immediate crisis, please call 1-844-493-TALK (8255) or text TALK to 38255.

998 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in the United States. 

Friendship Line - Institute on Aging

The Friendship Line is both a crisis intervention center and a “warm” line for routine, even daily, phone calls that provide emotional support, medication reminders and well-being check-ins.