Posts Tagged ‘support our troops’

military suicide on the rise….

“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.” C.S. Lewis

From the invasion of Afghanistan until last summer, the U.S. military had lost 761 soldiers in combat there. But a higher number in the service — 817 — had taken their own lives over the same period. The surge in suicides, which have risen five years in a row, has become a vexing problem for which the Army’s highest levels of command have yet to find a solution despite deploying hundreds of mental-health experts and investing millions of dollars. And the elephant in the room in much of the formal discussion of the problem is the burden of repeated tours of combat duty on a soldier’s battered psyche.

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1981284,00.html?hpt=T2#ixzz0sHVy8hEo

“We all hope. It’s what keeps us alive.” – David Mamet

the truth about military suicide is overwhelming to me – these feelings call me to action. i believe that support and encouragement fan the flames of HOPE.

last month – a group of friends and i purchased items for and sent out 6 military care packages. Next month we hope to send 10 packages! i thought about what has given me a lot of hope during the last 2 years – and realized it was THE ORCHARD messages i hear every week. i am excited to include cds – featuring messages from pastor Scott Hodge. Maybe you really can send HOPE via UPS ;o)  i am also organizing the monthly mailing of manila envelopes – that include magazines –  puzzles books- international phone cards – (and orchard cds.) if you’d like to get involved please let me know :o)

if you are interested in sending care packages / letters on your own – i highly recommend visiting this website for more info: http://www.anysoldier.com

Any Soldier is a organization that is special in one way – they specifically distribute all care packages and letters to soldiers who get little to NO mail !!

“He who has hope has everything.” – Arabian Proverb

i am also excited to join OPERATION SUPPORT OUR TROOPS- IL. they greet our soldiers who are returning home from war. they go to the airport with “thank you” signs – expressing support and gratitude – in whats known as a ” homecoming.” they also show respect and sympathy to the families of fallen soldiers by attending their funerals. what an amazing organization! to read about upcoming events or for more info:

http://www.osotil.org/


“The pain I feel now is the happiness I had before.” C.S. Lewis

thanksGIVING….

This thanksgiving give ” thank you” meals to our severely wounded troops!

THOUSANDS OF SEVERELY BURNED BLINDED OR PARALYZED TROOPS WILL BE STRUGGLING TO PUT FOOD ON THE TABLE THIS THANKSGIVING!

As a patriotic American, I know Thanksgiving is the perfect time to thank our servicemen and women for the painful sacrifices they’ve made while serving our country!

your kindness is more important than ever now that the recession is taking such a heavy toll on our wounded heroes and their families. Nearly half of the spouses of our disabled troops have quit their jobs to care for them. AND thousands of spouses who were working have lost their jobs in the recession. NO wonder they’ll have trouble putting food on the table this Thanksgiving!

please send a card to a disabled GI right now. If you’ve been following the news you’re aware there’s been an increase in the number of GIs wounded in Afghanistan. So your Thanksgiving (click here) THANK YOU and GET WELL card could be the first kind words they receive while sitting in their hospital bed after returning from overseas.

click below to give:

A tax-deductible gift of $60 can help provide Thanksgiving dinner, with all the trimmings, for one severely wounded GI and his or her family, $120 can help feed two families, $180 can provide dinner for three families, and so on.

And a gift of $15, $25 or $35 can be combined with other donations to feed a family in need.

You could be helping a retired Marine like Christopher Murphy of Pennsylvania, who told us that after being injured by a roadside bomb in Iraq, paying for “rent, food and car payments will be extremely difficult.”Or maybe someone like Blair Didion Sr. a retired Army sergeant from Texas, who suffered multiple spinal fractures from a roadside bomb in Iraq, says he sometimes relies on “food from public pantries” to help feed his family.

That’s just not right!

The good news is you can let a wounded hero like Blair or Christopher know you respect and honor the painful sacrifice they’ve made by helping to provide their family with Thanksgiving meals.

Let’s face it: You and I can’t heal their physical injuries or make them whole again. (No one can.)But by helping to provide their families with Thanksgiving meals, you can thank them for the sacrifice they’ve made while protecting your family’s freedom.

Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes
PO Box 96440
Washington, DC 20090

Providing Emergency Aid to Severely Wounded Troops and Their Families in Crisis

Broken Heroes.

my brother and sister both served 4 years in the army.  my brother was 82nd airborne division ( paratrooper ). because he was infantry – he was in the middle of combat – he was prepared to die. he did a tour in iraq and one in afghanistan. my sister served in a supply unit – she wasnt in combat – but still in danger – she was  injured in a convoy accident while serving in iraq.

i believe our military serve to protect our country and to fight for our freedom – from terrorists. they are ready and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice. and i have found that this is not the only sacrifice our military make. most who survive the war – will likely endure extreme emotional damage.

i heard a report that – in a recent month – that more soldiers died from suicide – then combat!

my heart aches for these broken soldiers ( and their families ) who are uneducated/ unprepared for the depression/ post traumatic stress disorder they will likely endure after the realities of war.

it seems the military does not want to take responsibility – so they dont discuss or inform soldiers/ veterans enough. i watched my siblings and many other friends go through the often unavoidable result – self medicating ( drug/ alcohol abuse ).  i am completely astounded at just how unhelpful the military is to these struggling souls. it is very frustrating – that they are required to jump through hoops just to receive the help they so desperately need.

soldiers are trained to be strong – and to put emotions aside. i believe many feel they should be strong enough to handle this mentally on their own. but when left untreated – results can be deadly. if only they knew that there was treatment. AND that they are not ALONE..

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here are some staggering statistics:

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Every day, five U.S. soldiers try to kill themselves. Before the Iraq war began, that figure was less than one suicide attempt a day.

“The really tough area here is stigma. We know that soldiers don’t want to go seek care. They’re tough, they’re strong, they don’t want to go see a behavioral health-care provider. Post-traumatic stress disorder also may be a factor in suicide attempts because it can result in broken relationships and often leads to drug and alcohol abuse.

The “typical” soldier who commits suicide is a member of an infantry unit who uses a firearm to carry out the act, according to the Army.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/02/01/military.suicides/index.html

Attempted suicides and self-injuries have quadrupled over the past six years.

The V.A. says the suicide rate among male veterans it serves under the age of 29 hit an all-time high. Those in that age group are more than twice as likely to commit suicide as people in the general population.

PAUL SULLIVAN, Veterans for Common Sense: The number-one reason why the service members and veterans coming back from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars are completing suicides is because of their involvement in the war, because of the horrors that they have seen in the war, and because of the lack of access to prompt and high-quality mental health care when they return home.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/health/july-dec08/suicides_11-10.html

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i cant help but to see this as another opportunity for LOVE and community to bring hope to a dying people – our soldiers – to whom we owe our very lives!!  even if you disagree with the wars being fought – please consider that – our soldiers have no choice in the matter. i believe we need to step up and do what we can to show our support and appreciation to our military. there are simple things we can do – like send letters and care packages. thank a soldier waiting at the airport. help a soldiers family while he/she is away ( cook a meal/ babysit/ fix a vehicle / mow a lawn.) keep them in CONSTANT PRAYER.

i spoke with a friend who opened up to me about his pain and darkest days – returning to civilian life.

the shock is best explained in his words:  ” living is a lot harder than killing or dying ….”

i pray those words resonate through you – like they did me.

Support our troops!

this website offers the links to some beautiful opportunities to serve the soldiers /veterans who so selflessly serve/ served our country!

http://www.soldiersangels.org

there are so many other ways to help!

” May no soldier go unloved. “

Adopt a Soldier – Individualized support throughout deployment
Angel Bakers – Homemade treats for the deployed
Blankets of Belief – Showing deployed troops, “We believe in you!”
Blankets of Gratitude – Handcrafted love for hospitalized veterans
Blankets of Hope – Handcrafted comfort for the wounded
Cards Plus Team – Extra TLC for soldiers & families
Chaplain Support Team – Help chaplains support the troops
Community Team Leaders (CTLs) – Representing Soldiers’ Angels at home
Eagle Cane Project – Handmade canes for the wounded
First Response Backpacks – Supplies for wounded in-country
Hero Packs – Care packages
K-9 Support – Caring for military working dogs and their handlers
Ladies of Liberty – Extra TLC for deployed females
Letter Writing Team – Personal letters for the deployed
Living LegendsRemembering the fallen and their families
Memorial Portraits – Drawings for families of the fallen
Operation Birthday Cake – Shipping gourmet birthday cakes to deployed troops
Operation Outreach – Supporting families waiting at home
Operation Phone Home – Calling cards
Operation Top Knot – Handmade gifts & virtual baby showers
Scarves – Handmade heat and sand protection
SA Germany
– Supporting medevac’d wounded/ill and medical staff at Landstuhl
SOS:Kids – Helping deployed soldiers help local kids
Tank Support - Helping Veterans Travel to Medical Appointments
Valour-IT – Adaptive laptops for the wounded
VA Crochet & Craft – Handmade comfort & dignity for hospitalized Vets
Veterans Support – Assisting veterans facilities
Wounded TLC – Letters and care packages for the wounded


operation worship.

Show your patriotism and appreciation for those who serve our country. Share a bible with them.

Many soldiers who are facing war and possibly death – are searching for truth. My brother had many conversations regarding faith – with fellow soldiers – while in Iraq and Afghanistan. This subject comes up often. Many soldiers are open to finding something to believe in.

Your gift of a personal size operation worship bible will let a soldier know you support their efforts and value their dedication to duty. Purchase one for only $4.99 and personalize it with a message. They will send it to a service person on your behalf.

http://www.operationworship.com/

any soldier.

i wrote in my previous post – that it means a lot to our soldiers to know there are people back home – who are proud of them. they need to know that we think of them – and are thankful for the sacrifices they make to keep us safe. they deserve our support and appreciation.

many soldiers feel lonely while overseas. they are far away from family and loved ones. they get up everyday knowing it may be their last. they have the courage to face death – because they know we are counting on them. please consider writing to our soldiers…..

consider that your letter might be the only one a soldier might receive. consider that your words of encouragement might be the last words they read. consider that it only takes a few minutes of your time to write a letter – but that it could mean the world to a lonely hero.

the following website offers you the chance to give hope to our soldiers. they specifically give mail and care packages to soldiers who get little to no mail. it breaks my heart to know there are soldiers feeling alone – but encourages me to know we can make a difference!

http://www.anysoldier.com

Sergeant Brian Horn, an Army Infantry Soldier with the 173rd Airborne Brigade was in the Kirkuk area of Iraq when he started the idea of Any Soldier® to help care for his soldiers. He agreed to distribute packages that came to him with “Attn: Any Soldier®” in his address to soldiers who didn’t get mail. Any Soldier Inc. started in August 2003 as a simple family effort to help the soldiers in one Army unit. Due to overwhelming requests, on 1 January 2004 the Any Soldier® effort was expanded to include any member of the Armed Forces in harm’s way.


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