Meeting the Needs of Women Veterans Where They Are
Posted by sherrysaunders on March 16, 2012
Business and Professional Women’s (BPW) Foundation announced that Women Veterans Interactive (WVI), a Maryland based organization meeting the needs of DC Metro Area women veterans and their families, has been designated a Community Partner in Joining Forces for Women Veterans and Military Spouses Mentoring Plus™.
WVI brings a fresh interactive approach to supporting women veterans through diligent advocacy efforts, research, policy engagement, networking, collaborations, community support, and peer to peer interaction. WVI is dedicated to addressing the needs of women veterans.
Founder and CEO, Ginger Miller said, “Our goal is to serve the whole women veteran by meeting her at her point of need, while providing her with housing options, support services and interaction.”
“BPW Foundation’s Joining Forces Mentoring Plus™ will fill a critical need by matching women mentors with women veterans who are receiving assistance from Women Veterans Interactive. Working together, Women Veterans Interactive and Joining Forces Mentoring Plus™ will help these veterans face employment and career challenges so they can move toward successful civilian careers” said BPW Foundation CEO Deborah L. Frett.
Ginger Miller, herself a veteran and formerly homeless said, “We believe in giving women veterans the respect they have earned and we are dedicated to working alongside these women to facilitate their path to independence. We also are working to help eradicate homelessness among women veterans and seek ways to prevent it.”
Studies have shown that many factors make transition harder for woman veterans, including, lack of awareness and/or unavailability of veteran’s benefits, legal issues, military sexual trauma, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, service disabilities, divorce/separation, domestic violence, lack of family or social support networks, and substance abuse.
The 1st Annual Empowerment and Unification Brunch Cruise for women veterans sponsored by WVI will sail from National Harbor, MD on March 18 and will celebrate women veterans during Women’s History Month. The cruise is a community outreach tool for 150+ women veterans who will engage in peer to peer interaction and obtain information on services and support available through the VA and nonprofit organizations. In addition to being a Cruise sponsor, BPW Foundation is providing funds to sponsor 20 women veterans to attend the cruise at no cost, and will be on board providing mentoring information.
The goal of the cruise is to strengthen and enlighten women veterans as they learn about some of the essential components needed for self sufficiency and economic stability which will help bridge the women veteran unemployment gap.
“Being able to tap into the Joining Forces Mentoring Plus™ network of women mentors and subject matter experts will be invaluable for these women veterans and offer them important resources. We are excited to join BPW Foundation as a Community Partner in Joining Forces Mentoring Plus™ and we know that this partnership will support women veterans, which is our organizations’ mutual goal.”
“Joining Forces Mentoring Plus™ is connecting women veterans of all eras with volunteer working women mentors across the U.S. whose personal and professional training has prepared them to provide insights, advice, and encouragement to women veterans,” Deborah Frett said. “Working together, volunteer mentors will help steer their mentees on individualized courses of action to succeed in the civilian workplace. Women Veterans Interactive’s commitment to women veterans and their families is an extraordinary example of serving those who have served. This is an ideal partnership, and we look forward to helping to meet the needs of women veterans together.”
BPW Foundation’s Joining Forces for Women Veterans and Military Spouses Mentoring Plus™ was developed following the October, 2010 Joining Forces for Women Veterans Summit, which found the need for informed, committed mentors to position and assist women veterans as they search for new employment, hone their career goals, and package their military skills and experience to gain access to meaningful civilian jobs. First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden highlighted this “mentorship gap” when they applauded BPW Foundation’s mentoring initiative as part of the White House’s national Joining Forces effort.
Women Veterans Interactive was created last year to meet all women veterans at their specific point of need, with a concerted focus on wellness and empowerment and homelessness. A division of John 14:2, Inc., Women Veterans Interactive (WVI) brings a pioneering, interactive approach to supporting women veterans and their families through policy engagement, community support, mentoring, and advocacy. http://www.john142vets.org/womenveterans/womenveteransinteractive.html