Sunday, January 22, 2017

Florida Veterans Needed To Mentor Veterans

We have the third largest Veterans Community in the nation. According to the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs, there are 1.5 million veterans.
Florida is home to more than 515,000 Vietnam-era veterans, so it is very likely that one in three veterans you meet in the Sunshine State is a Vietnam veteran.
As for OEF and OIF veterans, read this,
More than 231,000 veterans from Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom claim the Sunshine State as their home of record. Many are enrolling in Florida’s colleges and universities using the new Post 9/11 GI Bill. Others are looking for employment, housing, health care and other earned services, benefits and support. Florida welcomes its returning veterans and their families.
Don't you think it is time to stop taking walks to raise awareness and start standing beside a veteran needing support? Don't you think it is time to stop doing push-ups and help them stand up instead?

Do you remember what it was like coming home and finding yourself with the war inside of you going on and no one around to help you fight it? Ok, so then what is your problem now? 

I've seen so many of you show up for fundraisers and other veterans events. I've seen you open your wallets to donate to a veteran in need. You have joined veterans groups because of the brotherhood/sisterhood you still feel. Well, there are many veterans in need of your help. So why aren't you showing up to help them recover?
Florida veterans treatment court comes up short of mentors
Stars and Stripes
By JAMES A. JONES JR.
January 20, 2017

The Manatee County Veterans Treatment Court held its first session in Bradenton, Fla. on Aug. 6, 2015, before Circuit Judge Andrew Owens Jr. as a way to help vets who enter the judicial system get treatment and assistance.

But one of the stumbling blocks for the program has been finding enough veterans to mentor those trying to find their way back into society.

“Mentors are what make the program a success,” Chris Landis, Veterans Treatment Court services coordinator for the 12th Judicial Circuit, said Thursday at the Manatee County Veterans Council meeting.

There are only six mentors now serving all of Manatee and Sarasota, and about 20 are needed, Landis said.

An estimated 500 veterans enter the criminal justice system annually in Bradenton-Sarasota, and the veterans court is intended to assist those facing lower level charges.
read more here
Being a mentor isn't easy. It requires your time to help them go through the system designed to help them heal instead of being locked up like so many of your generation was. Most of the time, the charges they face are directly tied to what they carried back from combat and in the form of the demons we call Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

They are coming home, much like you did, without a clue they are not struck as they are suffering today and can have a better quality of life. It takes you showing up to prove that to them by your example. Show them they really matter to you and SHOW UP AS MENTORS!