Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Poster Girl Documentary

Be sure to watch the upcoming premiere of ‘Poster Girl’ tomorrow at 8/7C on HBO2! Give an Hour is listed on the website as a resource for viewers looking for more information after viewing the film.

Give an Hour,RecruitMilitary and Athena Bridge Online Town Hall

In partnership with Athena Bridge and RecruitMilitary, Give an Hour invites you to join us for an online town hall at http://vets.onlinetownhalls.com. Let us know your thoughts on some or all of the following questions:

How useful are job fairs and how can job fairs be improved?  What are the biggest barriers to veterans and their families entering the civilian job market? What are possible solutions, and who can implement them?  Landing a job is only half of the battle. The key to success is keeping the job after you’re hired. What advice would you give to a veteran who is entering the civilian workforce?  Why do you think some employers are afraid to hire veterans? What are possible solutions, and who can implement them?   There are a lot of non-profit social service resources available to veterans and their families. Would a combined job/resource fair be of interest or would it send a mixed message to employers that hiring a veteran is a liability? Why or why not?  

Weigh in at our online town hall: http://vets.onlinetownhalls.com  Your insights will be tremendously helpful as we work to improve future veteran-oriented employment initiatives across the country.  The town hall will run from November 8 through November 23.  Please feel free to disseminate this as far as wide as possible.  We hope to hear from you online!

GAH PSA in TIME Magazine

Check out the current issue of TIME Magazine for the Give an Hour public service announcement!

The Case Foundation recognizes Give an Hour

This Veterans Day, The Case Foundation would like to recognize the work of Give an Hour. Watch our video on The Case Foundation Facebook page, and for every like, comment, or share it receives this week, they’ll donate $10 to GAH, up to $10,000. (Terms & Conditions: http://ow.ly/7lE41)

To read more check out http://www.casefoundation.org/blog/when-they-come-home, and be sure to share!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Norfolk Webcast

We will webcast the Norfolk networking reception Live, October 6 at 4pm, on https://hamptonroadscares.org. Please help us disseminate this message to anyone interested in the Community Blueprint. The Community Blueprint aims to harness the untapped potential in local communities to enhance effective and sustainable care for military families. We hope communities around the country will benefit from lessons learned from our efforts in Hampton Roads.

To view the event online, please join our webcast. 
You can even ask questions or comment online in real time. Here's how:

  1. Well before the event, browse to https://hamptonroadscares.org
  2. Register by clicking the Register link at the top right of the page. We'll ask you for your name, email address, zip code, and for a password. The system will send you a confirmation email.
  3. When you are ready to watch the webcast, browse back to https://hamptonroadscares.org, log in, and click the Webcasts tab at the top of the page on the far right. When the webcast begins, the viewer will automatically play.
  4. To ask questions, just type them in the area to the right that says "Write something for others to see..." and click "Share". The ability to ask questions or comment requires you to be logged in.
That's it! Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fayetteville Reception

Addressing the Needs of Fayetteville's Military Families

Join us for wine, cheese and thoughtful discussion.

Gates Four Golf & Country Club 4pm in Fayetteville, NC on October 4. 

Mayor Tony Chavonne will provide opening remarks. 

Presenting results of community and announcement of Walmart community grants program.

RSVP to evincent@giveanhour.org for more info. 


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fatigues to Fabulous Press Coverage

Give a Hour's own Jennifer Crane is featured in an article about Fatigues to Fabulous on Military.com. To read the article click the link - http://www.military.com/news/article/female-vets-raise-awareness-with-fashion.html.

GAH President and Founder Awarded Presidential Citation by APA

Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen Awarded Presidential Citation by
American Psychological Association

Dr. Van Dahlen is recognized for her visionary leadership and
her activism to harness the skills and generosity of
mental health professionals to care for this
nation's returning service members and their families 

(From left) Melba J.T. Vasquez, Ph.D., President, American Psychological Association, and Barbara Van
Dahlen, Ph.D., Founder and
President, Give an Hour

In 2005, Dr. Van Dahlen created Give an Hour, a nonprofit network of volunteer mental health professionals who provide free mental health services to U.S. troops, veterans, and their loved ones following deployment to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Born of her concern about the mental health implications of the war in Iraq, and started in her basement office, under her direction Give an Hour has grown into a 50-state network with 5,700 providers. She is frequently sought out by the press for her expertise on the psychological impact of war on troops and their families, and by the White House and top leadership of the Department of Defense as a thoughtful leader on mobilizing public, private, and community support for the nation's heroes. These efforts demonstrate her enduring commitment to doing good in the world, and to bringing the best that psychology has to offer to the needs of the community. In recognition of her many important contributions to psychology, the American Psychological Association presents Dr. Van Dahlen this Presidential Citation.

Provider Spotlight

 Provider Spotlight   
Cynthia Rudick, Ph.D. 

Dr. Cynthia Rudick is a Give an Hour™ provider who works with veterans from all the branches of the services and National Guard in and around Canton, Ohio. A Ph.D. in counselor education with a background in marital and family therapy, she teaches as an adjunct in graduate counseling programs. She is also a professional mediator and arbitrator and raised two stepchildren who are now grown.

Cynthia's experiences working with both Vietnam and Iraq war veterans have enriched her compassion for military clients. "They seldom have worked things through, often because of shame or pride. The young men and women who serve today were raised with the threat of terrorism beginning with September 11. For them the world is filled with people who do not value human life, and that's a fear-filled place to be." Cynthia's grandparents were originally from Poland and Russia, and she lost many in her family in the Holocaust, so she understands the existence of horror.

Her first Give an Hour™ client was a young woman who had been diagnosed as having a mental health issue and was dismissed from Basic Training. The woman had volunteered in hopes of eventually getting money to go to college and because she was desperate for some structure in her life. "The woman was so needy. I told her, of course I will work with you but in return you must work with me." Cynthia, who has run Welfare to Work programs and Mental Health Centers, referred her to all the free services in the Canton community that she could think of as well as the Cleveland Hospital. She hopes the woman availed herself of their help. "I wish the military would assess these kids at the recruitment level," Cynthia says. "My client was not mentally healthy enough for the military. Because of the large National Guard presence, we also need family mental health services around Canton, especially for children and teenagers."

Cynthia's second Give an Hour™ client was a woman whose son, an only child, had recently returned from his second deployment to Iraq and would not talk to her. The son was all the woman lived for. She had worked hard to support the two of them when he was growing up. "She told me, 'I'm a mental case because he is so withdrawn,'" Cynthia says. "I told her that she could come anytime to talk with me. The main problem," Cynthia adds, "is that these soldiers need to share their experiences with others who they can trust and who understand what they have gone through." Cynthia is an enthusiastic supporter of Give an Hour™ and hopes to work with more clients on the organization's behalf. "I understand how critical these services can be," she says. "So many of these young people have been unable to work their emotions through to the light at the end of the tunnel."

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Fatigues To Fabulous


- Give an Hour and the Society For Women's Health Research Unite to Support 1.8 Million Women Armed Forces Veterans via a Commemorative Watch by DKNYC to be Sold Exclusively at HSN-
-Fashion Event to be Held during Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Featuring Distinguished Women Veterans, Top Designers and Celebrity Friends-

DKNYC has designed the exclusive watch, featuring traditional military "dog tag" imagery with a stylish feminine twist.      

The watch will be available in multiple color-ways (red, white blue, beige camouflage and brown camouflage) for $ 59.95 exclusively through   HSN.com starting August 19th and on HSN September 8, 9 and 11.

Give an Hour will receive a portion of the proceeds for each watch sold.

The inaugural F2F fashion event will be held at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) in Lincoln Center's Courtyard on Thursday, September 8, 2011, at 12:30 pm ET. This is a tremendous opportunity to leverage the power of fashion week with its glamour and media attention to shine a spotlight on the unique issues affecting these deserving women.

The event will feature six women veterans, including Give an Hour's own Jennifer Crane, dressed by top American designers including Calvin Klein and Donna Karan. The event will honor their service to our country and recognize the challenges they face as they come home. These veterans will share their stories - so that our country will better understand their experiences and their needs. The event will end with a moving rendition of "Amazing Grace" by Anne Marie Faison, a U.S. Army veteran who served for 20+ years and retired in 2009 as a wounded warrior.  

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Give an Hour Partners with LHI to Better Serve our Nation’s Heroes

Give an Hour and Logistics Health Incorporated (LHI), a company which provides health care to U.S. Service members, recently teamed up to better address the needs of our nation’s heroes. The partnership allows Give an Hour to tap the marketing expertise and organizational resources at LHI to reach a wider audience of potential volunteer providers. Meantime, the arrangement allows LHI to extend an opportunity to Give an Hour volunteers to deepen their commitment to Servicemen and women by joining LHI’s nationwide provider network.

Based in La Crosse, Wis., LHI is dedicated to providing care for mission critical; offering the best in health care services to the men and women who keep America safe and running. With a nationwide provider network of more than 25,000, LHI offers both on-location and in-clinic services, and is currently looking for behavioral health providers to add to its workforce. Providers are compensated for their time and enjoy flexible scheduling and the opportunity to give back even more to our military.

LHI shares the same deep-seated commitment Give an Hour has to Service members who encounter difficulties post-deployment. LHI providers help identify potential Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, behavioral health and chemical dependency issues and refer Service members in need of follow-up care. Last year alone, LHI identified more than 300 Service members who indicated they had immediate plans to harm themselves or others, potentially saving hundreds of lives.

LHI has been awarded the highest honor given by the U.S. Department of Defense to an employer, the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Freedom Award. In addition, LHI supports Veterans’ causes through generous planned giving, and is a proud supporter of Give an Hour. To learn more about LHI and how to join their provider network, go to www.logisticshealth.com

Source: LHI

Monday, August 1, 2011

GAH Global Giving Challenge!!

Give an Hour is participating in a donations "challenge" for the month of August 2011 as part of a web based giving campaign called Global Giving. If we receive $4,000 or more in donations through the Global Giving website from a minimum of 50 individual donors, GAH will become a regular member charity at Global Giving. This membership will lead to additional exposure to donors and additional donations for our organization.

All donations raised in August will benefit GAH - but we believe that we can exceed our minimum goal if you and others support this effort. If you are a member of our volunteer network of providers, you are already donating your time and we thank you. Please assist us in this effort by sending this notice to 5 friends and ask them to consider making a donation. All donations of $10 or more are accepted.

The GAH project described on Global Giving's website is an expansion of our outreach program. Please take a moment to review it. It will allow GAH to reach more providers and assist those in need – especially those who live in rural or remote areas where services are limited or unavailable.

Please let us know if you have any questions or suggestions by contacting Lisa Calixto (lcalixto@giveanhour.org) or Katherine Wilkins (kwilkins@giveanhour.org). We are counting on all of our friends to help us in this critical effort. You can donate, ask your friends to donate, or do both! You can access GAH's project page by clicking on the following link: http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/free-mental-health-care-for-military-families/.

Thank you for your compassion and generosity.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Give an Hour™ Announces Community Blueprint Demonstration Projects to Address Needs of Military Families

Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation Awards  
$2 Million Grant to Fund Initiative

In June, Give an Hour™ announced two demonstration projects of the Community Blueprint, a collaborative effort to help communities address the needs of veterans and military families on a local level.

Admiral Michael G. Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke at the announcement of the projects, held at the Women in Military Service Memorial in Washington, D.C.  The event included a discussion about the need for communities to support and assist military families in their area.On the panel were Mr. Rob Gordon, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense; Ms. Tracy Hoover, Chief of Staff for Points of Light; Mr. Jim Lorraine, Executive Director of Central Savannah River Area - Wounded Warrior Care Project; and Mrs. Deborah Mullen, military advocate and wife of Adm. Mullen.Mark Thompson of Time magazine facilitated the discussion.

The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation has awarded Give an Hour™ a $2 million grant for the demonstration projects in Norfolk, Va., and Fayetteville, N.C. 

The Walmart Foundation has committed $144,000 in support of the program, which will be used to provide grants to a total of 16 local organizations in Norfolk and Fayetteville, with the goal of improving the services they deliver to the military community. These organizations will be eligible to apply for grants of up to $15,000.

There is universal public support for service members, veterans, and their families. Federal, state, and local governments, as well as nonprofit, private, and philanthropic resources and services, have grown and improved in communities across the Unites States. But supporting veterans, service members, and their families is about ensuring that communities are prepared to organize the resources and services that help military families lead healthy, successful lives. There remain significant gaps in services and a great deal of untapped potential for providing effective and sustainable care through focused planning and coordination.  

To address these needs by leveraging the combined experience and expertise of collaborating organizations, volunteers from several leading nonprofits are creating an online Community Blueprint tool that will help local community leaders assess and improve their community's support for veterans, service members, and their families. The nonprofits on the Community Blueprint Advisory Council cover a wide range of areas of focus and expertise:  American Legion Auxiliary, American Red Cross, America's Promise Alliance, Armed Forces Services Corporation, Blue Star Families, Give an Hour™, Military Child Education Coalition, Military Officers Association of America, National Military Family Association, Operation Homefront, Points of Light Institute/HandsOn Network, ServiceNation: Mission Serve, the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, and the Veterans' Innovation Center.

With the grant from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, Give an Hour will lead the implementation of the Community Blueprint in the demonstration cities.Give an Hour is inviting local and national organizations to help implement the program and to evaluate successes.

"War has both short-term and long-term consequences that can influence the emotional and physical health of returning veterans and their family members for many years to come. There are a multitude of resources available to soldiers and their families, but in many instances these resources are disconnected and underutilized," says John Damonti, president of the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation.  "Strategic, coordinated community partnerships can support the military in its efforts to address this important issue. The Community Blueprint will guide community leaders, local governments, and the military as they work together to develop the supportive communities that our veterans and their families deserve."

"We are grateful for the generosity of the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation and to Walmart for recognizing the importance of harnessing the goodwill of communities in supporting the military families who are left behind when their service members deploy and in supporting the service members as they return home," said Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and president of Give an Hour™.  "This kind of support, we've found, is critical to the successful reintegration of military families back into their communities.These grants will help us to evaluate vital services and highlight innovative examples, ensuring they are available and easily accessible to military men and women and families, wherever they live."

Monday, July 18, 2011

GAH table Schaumburg, IL - Yellow Ribbon

One of our providers, Kami Himes, at the GAH table Schaumburg, IL Yellow Ribbon event.  There were approximate 1,000 USAR Soldiers and family members recently deployed or about to deploy at this event.  Kami set out GAH brochures and wallet cards, made the board and set up that table with her own ingenuity.  

She and seven other volunteer providers stepped up to cover this event.  Kami and Barb Gillett are also Military Family Life Consultants (MFLC) as well as GAH providers.

This is GAH's first Yellow Ribbon with the 88th RSC, and we hope to do many more in the midwest and across the country.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Vote for GAH in Vivint Gives Back Project!

Do you want to help GAH win $$ for programs that help our veterans? Vote once a day to help get us to the next round. It only takes 30 seconds and you would be helping GAH reach more veterans and recruit more providers. We need to continue to get the word out about GAH and the great work we do. 

I need everyone's help by voting and urging friends and family to vote! You can vote once a day!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book Review - Packing Inferno: The Unmaking of a Marine

Packing Inferno: The Unmaking of a Marine by Tyler Boudreau, Feral House Publishing, 2008

 Packing Inferno is the first person account of a twelve year Marine officer who commands a platoon in Iraq, only to find himself fighting another war within as PTSD gradually overwhelms him. Tyler Boudreau is a gifted writer whose work about combat, PTSD and the moral issues surrounding war has appeared in the New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Industry Standard. Huffington Post, Seattle Times and New Hampshire Daily. Boudreau records his combat experiences in 2004 first in and around Fallujah and Lutifiyah and then at various Forward Operating Bases around Baghdad. His struggle to codify and give meaning to the realities of war, and his disintegration of self when he’s unable to makes for fascinating reading. When asked to deploy a second time to Iraq Boudreau refuses and is punished by being given the duty of notifying family members that their Marine has been injured or killed. Once he has left the Corps Boudreau must confront his own hidden injuries and try to save himself. Boudreau draws on philosophy, literature, military history and the most intimate details of his own emotional landscape to chronicle his journey through Dante’s rings of hell. This is ultimately a story of a man disassembled by war left with no guidance as to how to rebuild himself. Packing Inferno is a significantly useful book for mental health providers at only 221 pages. Boudeau’s “voice” is fairly sophisticated which may make his writing less accessible to young readers. 

Saagara: Better Health Through Breath

Saagara develops affordable, accessible tools that focus on the foundations of health and wellness, including diet, exercise, and proper breathing.  

This past November the Michigan-based digital health and wellness company launched a "Healthy Veterans, Happy Families" campaign to raise funds for GAH. In honor of Veterans Month, 10 percent of Saagara's November app revenue will be donated to Give an Hour™. 

Their app, called Pranayama, is a breathing tool for reducing stress and anxiety. It focuses on slow, deep breathing and guides the user with calming music and animated visuals to gain energy, focus, and relaxation. It is available for use on a mobile device such as the iPhone, Android, and iPad, or on your PC or Mac when you join the Saagara Member Community.

To download the application or to learn more, visit www.saagara.com

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Book Review - Lethal Warriors: When a New Band of Brothers Came Home - Uncovering the Tragic Reality of PTSD

Lethal Warriors: When a New Band of Brothers Came Home – Uncovering the Tragic Reality of PTSD by David Philipps, Palgrave  Macmillan, 2010

Lethal Warriors is a journalist tour de force about the 506th Infantry Regiment, the WWII “Band of Brothers” and the horrific crimes a group of young veterans from the unit commit in Colorado Springs after multiple tours of duty in Iraq. Philipps’ adroit handling of the chilling true story of these “lethal warriors” sheds a bright light on their struggles with severe PTSD and failure to reintegrate into society. Moreover as his story progresses it becomes apparent that as crime after crime is committed, the loyalty nurtured by the Lethal Warriors “down range” morphed into a twisted code of silence that enabled these soldiers to slip deeper into self destruction from alcohol to drug use to violence and ultimately, multiple killings. Story after story demonstrates what happens when reflexive fire training, combat stress, negligent leadership at home and drugs and alcohol are combined. While Philipps focuses primarily on the crime spree, he does not neglect those who worked assiduously to address the issue of combat stress, particularly General Mark Graham who was commander of Fort Carson during this time.  Near closure there is a chapter devoted to the EPICON finding, a research effort into the destructive pattern of behavior at Fort Carson conducted by a team of physicians and PdDs in 2008. The EPICON findings spurred the national Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, a nationwide initiative to counteract the effects of combat stress. This excellent book is a “must read” for any mental health provider who intends to work with military service members with mental health needs.  It is also appropriate for veterans and family members who are able to handle the graphic descriptions of violence but is not appropriate for readers under 16. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Supporting Give an Hour™

Give an Hour™ is extremely grateful to our generous sponsors:
  • Eli Lilly Foundation 
  • Capital One
  • Philip L. Graham Fund
  • The Standard Charitable Foundation  
  • Veterans Advantage
  • Walmart Foundation
  • Bob Woodruff Foundation
If you are interested in individual or corporate giving, please contact Katherine Wilkins, director of development, at kwilkins@giveanhour.org.

You may also make an online donation here:  http://bit.ly/7dWtPl  

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Standard Charitable Foundation Grants $25,000 to Give an Hour™

The Standard Charitable Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Standard Insurance Company ("The Standard"), has announced a one-year $25,000 grant to Give an Hour™. This grant, the third made to the nonprofit organization since 2008, brings the total awarded to Give an Hour™ by the Foundation to $115,000.

"At The Standard, we strive to help people achieve financial security," said Greg Ness, president of The Standard Charitable Foundation and president and CEO at The Standard. "This philosophy also guides the Foundation's commitment to support organizations such as Give an Hour™, whose positive impact on families and individuals dealing with disabilities, mental health issues, and the loss of loved ones can be felt in communities throughout our nation."

"Financial support from The Standard Charitable Foundation over a three-year period has helped us continue to make a real difference in the lives of U.S. military personnel and their families," said Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and president of Give an Hour™. "The Standard has stepped up in recognition of this very deserving population--helping to address the psychological needs of military personnel and their families so that they can live better, more fulfilling lives."

The grant from The Standard Charitable Foundation will help Give an Hour™ recruit additional mental health professionals to its nationwide network of providers, allowing us to provide more services to veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. 
For more information about The Standard Charitable Foundation, please visit www.standard.com/foundation.