The Veteran outreach logo is a stark reminder of what we are working for everyday at the Castellano Foundation. The heart is made up of the number twenty-two (22), with one 2 inverted and the other is correct to represent the number of Veterans that we lose to suicide everyday. These members come home from overseas deployments not knowing how or where to turn for help. The hand in the middle is a two part message. First, the hand is an actual Native American symbol for “healing” which is what our main goal is in the Veteran Outreach Program. Secondly, a commonly used saying in war zones is, “I got your six” meaning “I got your back.” We want Veterans to know that no matter what they have been through, no matter the challenges that have followed and no matter what struggles still exist, we at the Castellano Foundation “have your six.” We will always strive to assist our Veterans with identifying and becoming established with all available resources as suffering in silence, and often alone, is not an acceptable option in the eyes of the Veteran Outreach Program. Please believe that you will have a support system at all times and help is but a click or phone call away. May God Bless our Veterans and God Bless America.
Below are resources available to our Veterans and active duty members.
First and foremost, should you find yourself in a crisis situation, please call 911 or reach out to:
1) Veteran/Military Crisis Line 1-800-273-8255 press 1
2) Contact National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) at 1-800-950-NAMI or if you are in a crisis you can also Text “NAMI” to 741741
Below are some beneficial websites to visit with pertinent information and many links to additional resources for those that like to do research on their own:
3) Visit mentalhealth.va.gov
4) Visit militaryonesource.mil
5) Visit benefits.gov
And once more, below are links to websites as well as in-patient residential programs (short term), which may include family members as well, depending on the program.
6) Anger and Irritability Management – http://www.veterantraining.va.gov/apps/aims/index.html New interactive skills building for anger and irritability.
7) Cigna Stress Management Toolket – cigna.com
Stress is a fact of life. It’s your mind’s and body’s response to demanding situations or events. Not all stress is bad. It can energize you and help you perform at your best. But too much stress, or stress that lasts too long, can take a toll. This link will connect with with podcasts and audio versions of mindfulness exercises to help relieve stress.
8) Coming Home Project – www.cominghomeproject.net. “Devoted to providing compassionate care, support and stress management tools for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families . . a range of free services: residential retreats; psychological counseling; education, training and consultation; self-care for service providers; and community forums . . . emotional, spiritual, relationship, and reintegration challenges faced by veterans and families before, during and after deployment.”
9) Grace After Fire – www.graceafterfire.org.
Grace After Fire is designed to serve women veterans from all eras and branches of service (currently 1.8M), and is preparing to meet the high numbers of women (approximately 14 percent of the armed services) currently serving. Treatment links and options are listed.
10) Homecoming 4 Veterans – http://www.homecoming4veterans.org/ This site offers a list of biofeedback practitioners who are willing to offer FREE biofeedback to OEF/OIF veterans for a minimum of 20 sessions. Click on “find a clinician” to access help in your area.
11) Make the Connection – http://maketheconnection.net/ This website has some really helpful resources and information about invisible wounds of war and how to identify, get help and understand them better.
12) National Alliance on Mental Illness – www.nami.org/veterans. Specific information about Veterans and mental health related illnesses and information for resources for veterans and their families.
13)National Institute of Mental Health – http://www.nimh.nih.gov/index.shtml
Scroll down to “Mental Health Topics” to get a description of mental health diagnosis and how to locate resources for assistance.
14) National Center for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – www.ptsd.va.gov.
Information on PTSD from the National Center for PTSD.
15) Operation Mend https://www.uclahealth.org/operationmend/intensive-treatment-program
Participants in the program will receive the personalized care for which UCLA Operation Mend is known. All care, travel and accommodations are arranged for and provided at no cost to Operation Mend patients and their families. In addition, patients and family members will be picked up at the gate of the airplane upon arrival and transported to and from their hotel and all activities and appointments. Following the onsite three-week program, participants will take part in an additional three weeks of provider-facilitated peer-to-peer support via telehealth to continue refining skills and building community.
16) Operation Reach Out – FREE! Suicide Prevention Apps – http://www.4mca.com/suicide_prevention_app/ These apps are designed to encourage people to reach out for help when they are having suicidal thoughts, help those who are concerned about family members, spouses, or fellow service members who may be suicidal, provide a personal contact help center, provide activities to help people who are depressed stay connected to others.
17) Red Cross – www.redcross.org
Go to “Getting Assistance” and click on “Military Families” to find out about the resources that are offered by the red cross with regard to counseling and other social service needs or call 1-877-272-7337.
18) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration – www.samhsa.gov.
The United States Department of Health and Human Services special link to mental health resources. Look in left hand menu under “treatment locators” to find community mental health resources near you.
19) Suicide Prevention Action Network – www.spanusa.org.
A national suicide prevention organization that provides extensive information that may be helpful for veterans and their families. 1-800-273-TALKfor 24/7 assistance.
20) Suicide Information/Assistance http://www.mentalhealth.va.gov/.
VA Suicide Hotline and other mental Health support and information.
21) Vet Centers – www.vetcenter.va.gov.
Vet Centers offer a wide range of services to help you make a successful transition from military to civilian life. Services include -individual & group counseling, marital and family counseling, bereavement counseling, medical & benefits referrals, employment counseling. To locate the Vet Center nearest you, click on “find a vet center” in the right hand menu.
22) Warriors Heart – https://www.warriorsheart.com/ Warriors Heart is a privately funded treatment center located in San Antonio, where we only treat active military, veterans, firefighters, police, EMTs, and active members from across the United States that belong to organizations that protect and serve the citizens of the United States.
23) Zoc Doc – http://www.zocdoc.com/therapist-counselors A link that can help identify therapists and counselors in your area.