Who We Are
“It is our turn to step up with other organizations and help those that have fought and sacrificed so much for us."
- Our Founder, Gus Guadagnino
The Veteran's Heat Factory ("VHF") is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization serving our local Veteran's/First Responder community.
The Veteran's Heat Factory is an organization initiated to empower First Responders who have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) by providing services and linkage to resources that unlock their full potential, inspire personal growth, encourage community integration, and support their ability to re-enter the workforce and achieve lifelong success.
VHF service offerings include:
- Establishing relationships with organizations to facilitate support systems for our First Responder community
- Increase public awareness of Post-Traumatic Stress
- Using Psycho-education as a form of treatment for First Responders with PTSD and their families
- Assisting spouses, children, and other family members, in the healing process of the individual with PTSD
Too often, alternative treatment options fail to; appropriately address the impact of PTSD on the family and/or raise awareness of the increasing needs of the First Responder community through public events, media outlets, social media, service organizations, and churches.
"Our First Responders have earned the best we can provide, regardless of their current circumstances. I have decided that the rest of my working life will be focused on helping those that have served for a better life for me and our country, our First Responders." - Gus Guadagnino, Founder of Veteran's Heat Factory
Hernando County is home to many brave men and women who have put their lives on the line to serve our community and keep us safe. They have always been there for us. We need to be there for them when they are struggling with wounds of war on the street that we cannot see! These programs will give them a shoulder to lean on and our community should be proud to support them!
"Empowering First Responders who have symptoms of PTSD, through services that unlock their full potential, inspire personal growth, encourage community integration, and support their ability to re-enter the workforce and achieve lifelong success."
A Message from the Founder
A Message from the Founder, Gus Guadagnino
I’ve been Chairman of the Board of K9 Partners For Patriots (K9P4P) for the last three years. This program has made a huge positive difference in the life of hundreds of First Responders suffering with PTSD. K9P4P is very successful with lessening the symptoms of First Responders suffering with PTSD, and in the process increase their sense of self-worth and self-esteem. After speaking to a few First Responders 6 and 12 months after they graduated, I realized that WE needed to do more for our First Responders. WE cannot just assist them in lessening their trauma symptoms, and help them in improving their self-esteem, they need assistance in moving forward, to improve their lives. They currently have no support system that would reach out to them, no one to prepare them to move forward, and provide the path to do so. I had the thought that there are many private resources in our community who can provide these services to help a First Responder. It is my strong belief that First Responders chose this line of work, our brave Warriors on the Streets of America face harm’s way without batting an eye, they do this to defend every citizen of America, and now they need the American citizens to step up for them, our First Responders/Warriors of the Street.
The Veterans/First Responders HEAT Factory takes the First Responders suffering with PTSD through a physical fitness program combined with weekly modules addressing topics such as health and wellness, managing anxiety, managing anger, improving communication and relationships, and finally exploring with each individual First Responders what they would like to do with their lives and resources they may need to achieve this. Many will never be able to work fulltime again, that doesn’t mean they have nothing to contribute to their communities. Maybe they would like to volunteer in the community, some may be able to move forward by returning to school, and some will have the ability to work fulltime again. Providing these amazing individuals with a life purpose is the reason for the Veterans/First Responders HEAT Factory.