DEBARY, Fla., April 1, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Armed with the supplies to lay down new floors, hang new gutters, and apply new coats of paint, wounded veterans and volunteers rallied to renovate a veteran's home, thanks to a community service event organized by Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) and The Mission Continues®. WWP partners with a network of high caliber organizations, like The Mission Continues, to provide innovative and effective services addressing the most pressing needs of our nation's wounded veterans, their caregivers, and families.
"We came together to help a homeless Navy veteran and her kids," explained Dan Kalagian, a retired Army veteran and Alumnus of WWP. "She was first assisted by Veterans Community, a veteran service organization that helped her get a place to live. The Mission Continues then joined in to help landscape the yard, paint the house, and put in some floors and light fixtures. Wounded Warrior Project brought more people in to help finish the job. We did a lot of work and accomplished a ton. It was so good to see."
Funding provided by WWP to like-minded organizations fulfills a need outside the scope of WWP's direct programs and services, enhancing the support available to wounded veterans, their caregivers, and families. These investments injected into local communities across the nation serve injured service members by promoting wellness and easing the burdens of injured veteran families by aiding in the recovery process and smoothing the transition into civilian life.
"Some veterans who work with The Mission Continues were wounded during the war and aren't aware of how Wounded Warrior Project can help," said Dan. "So I try and reach out to the veterans at these events and educate them about the programs and services that they could utilize as a WWP Alumni."
For WWP, there is a distinct difference between members and Alumni; the term Alumni indicates a mutual shared experience and denotes your place in an organization was earned. There are no membership fees or dues at WWP - those were paid by wearing the uniform and on the battlefield. It is for that reason that all WWP programs and services are offered to Alumni free of charge. Through direct programs and services like the Alumni program, wounded service members have a chance to deepen their bonds through camaraderie at welcoming events in relaxed environments. Many WWP Alumni face similar challenges and events like this offer them a chance to come together and connect with other wounded veterans and family support members.
"We worked hard, but found the time to have some fun as well," said Dan. "When I stopped to text a friend, one of the Alumni on site took the time to snap a picture of me on my phone and sent it out, joking around that I was slacking off on the job. I received some good natured grief for it, but we had a good laugh. Sometimes you need those moments of levity while you're making an impact."
Dan took the time to reflect on the significance of the day, as he has been on several WWP events since becoming an Alumnus last year. "I've been to a few WWP events before, but this event was probably the most important one to me thus far. The work we did put a roof over a family's head. Even when we as wounded veterans are struggling, we can come together and help each other. That's what makes these projects worth doing, and that's why I am so grateful for what organizations like Wounded Warrior Project and The Mission Continues do for us veterans."
More than 100,000 wounded veterans, caregivers, and family members receive access to WWP programs and services. Most recently, WWP launched Warrior Care Network™, a $100 million investment to battle the invisible wounds of war and reach those who might otherwise go untreated. This is a first-of-its-kind partnership between WWP and four national academic medical centers of excellence including Emory Healthcare, Massachusetts General Hospital, Rush University Medical Center, and UCLA Health to connect thousands of injured warriors with world-class care. In February 2016, WWP supported 2,553 Alumni as they journeyed to their new normal as part of WWP's commitment to mental wellness. To find out more about WWP's programs and services, please visit: https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/programs.aspx.
About Wounded Warrior Project
The mission of Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. The WWP purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida. To get involved and learn more, visit woundedwarriorproject.org.
About The Mission Continues
The Mission Continues empowers veterans who are adjusting to life at home to find purpose through community impact. We redeploy veterans on new missions in their communities, so that their actions will inspire future generations to serve. Our operations in cities across the country deploy veteran volunteers alongside non-profit partners and community leaders to solve some of the most challenging issues facing our communities: improving community education resources, eliminating food deserts, mentoring at-risk youth and more. Through this unique model, veterans build new skills and networks that help them successfully reintegrate to life after the military while making long-term, sustainable transformations in communities and inspiring future generations to serve.
SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project