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Returning Veterans Fund

Connecting military veterans and their families with the recovery tools they need

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More Infor
  • 30%

    of recent U.S. war veterans suffer from TBI & PTSD
  • Vietnam

    veterans are needing help more than ever
  • Effective

    recovery tools simply need the funding to be deployed

A fund ready for donors. The Returning Veterans Fund will support the development of recovery services and supports for military veterans and their families. 

Where the problem lies

After-effects of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan

The number of Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans presenting with post-traumatic stress disorder at the Department of Veterans Affairs is higher than originally projected. According to an April 2015 Washington Post article, an estimated thirty percent of the 2.7 million former American troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan now live with traumatic brain injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder.

The effect of psychological stigma in the military still keeps many veterans from seeking needed mental health services. Barriers that might prevent veterans from seeking mental health care at the VA include stigma and beliefs about mental health care, a lack of understanding or awareness of mental health care, logistical barriers to accessing care and concerns about VA health care services in general.

An estimated twenty to thirty percent of women who served in these wars were sexually assaulted and/or sexually harassed while in the military. As a result, they have higher rates of PTSD and homelessness than their male counterparts. The daily toll on military children can include becoming the caregiver of a traumatized veteran parent and being diagnosed with secondary PTSD.

Retiring Vietnam veterans seeking help for the first time

The majority of patients being treated by the VA for PTSD served in conflicts prior to 9/11 and more than half of new cases come from earlier wars. Many recently-retired Vietnam veterans report that long-suppressed memories can no longer be ignored when the distraction of regular employment gone, and more and more of those veterans are seeking help from a system with an already severe shortage of qualified mental health professionals.

Help is on the way

The Returning Veterans Project in Oregon seeks to raise $100,000 to recruit, train and support 150 licensed independent mental health practitioners to provide pro bono services to post-9/11 war zone veterans and their families. Per capita, the Oregon National Guard has deployed more times to Iraq/Afghanistan than any other, and since 2011, has had the first to third highest suicide rate of all Guards in the nation. Newly recruited providers will join the 182 mental health and somatic practitioners already in our volunteer network providing free, confidential treatment services to help bring our newest generation of war zone veterans all the way home to their families and communities.

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