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WINS FOR WARRIORS PROGRAMS

The Need:

According to a study by RAND, approximately one-third of those who were deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan will experience post traumatic stress, traumatic brain injury and/or depression. This is attributed to more frequent deployments, of greater lengths, with shorter rest periods in between. Their research shows that an individual with any of those conditions is more likely to have other psychiatric problems and to attempt suicide.

The Department of Veterans Affairs released figures showing that every day, 22 veterans take their own lives. That's a suicide every 65 minutes.

While it is important to understand what the numbers show, it is also necessary to focus on the strengths of all veterans. There has been a shift nationwide to focus away from negative messaging centered around wounds and scars, instead highlighting skills and resiliency.

Wins for Warriors partners with organizations to provide mental health support for veterans and their families, while also using its platform to be part of the national movement to change the conversation and shift focus to the fact that all veterans can be game changers!

Results:

In August 2013, Detroit Tigers All-Star pitcher Justin Verlander announced a commitment of $1 million to launch Wins for Warriors.

Wins for Warriors united with other philanthropic leaders in April 2014 when the organization participated in the launch of the White House's Joining Forces Initiative Impact Pledge to support veterans and military families over the next five years.

During the first grant cycle (2013-14), Wins for Warriors awarded $267,000 in grant funding to two best-in-class organizations: Give an Hour and The Mission Continues.

  • Partnering with Wins for Warriors, Give an Hour launched two new positions on the ground in Detroit and the Richmond/Norfolk markets in order to recruit more volunteer licensed mental health professionals to offer free counseling to the military and veteran population.

  • Support from Wins for Warriors helped The Mission Continues to sponsor a veteran from each of our target markets to enroll in a six-month service and leadership program. Through the intensive Fellowship Program, veterans dedicate themselves to serving in their community.

Future Goals:

During the second grant cycle, starting January 2015, Wins for Warriors will expand its roster to include several new partnerships with the following leaders in the field while continuing to support Give an Hour and The Mission Continues:

  • Boulder Crest Retreat: sending families to a therapeutic retreat to reconnect and bond

  • M-SPAN at University of Michigan: piloting a new version of their STRoNG Military Families parenting program

  • RAND: analyzing gaps and barriers that exist in services for veterans in Detroit

For more information, visit www.winsforwarriors.org and follow us @winsforwarriors.


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