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Workshop offers resources for returning veterans

“Healing Communities Welcome Veterans Home,” an event to provide faith community members and grassroots activists with tools and resources to act on behalf of veterans, will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 7, in Cataldo Hall at Gonzaga University.

One presenter is Jurene Mason, a Spokane veteran.  She was among 30 people invited to Washington, D.C. in February to meet with presidential staff about initiatives around the country to help local communities engage in supporting and affirming veterans and their families. 

The workshop will address how to support healthy homecomings for veterans, said Marian Beaumier of ACT Ministries, one of the sponsors.  “Participants will make a concrete commitment to support veterans and families.  The event will provide tools and follow-up for effective ministry.”

Workshop sponsors include Army One Source, Gonzaga University, the Washington Association of Churches (WAC), Catholic Charities Spokane and other state and local organizations. 

The WAC offers clergy workshops around the state on ministry with veterans and families.

Army One Source is establishing a website for veterans to
access local resources from anywhere around the globe.  It has just hired a staff member to direct services in Eastern Washington.

Other organizers are Access to Recovery with the State Department of Social and Health Services, Women’s Healing and Empowerment Network, Stonecroft Ministries, Fairchild Air Force Base chaplains, Pacific Northwest Teen Challenge, Greater Spokane Substance Abuse Council, Northwest Veteran Resource Center, Veterans Outreach at Life Center and Veterans Support Network.

First Lady Michelle Obama and Jill Biden, wife of the Vice President, launched a national initiative calling for support of service members and their families through education, challenge and action among citizens, communities, businesses, nonprofits, faith and philanthropic organizations, and the federal government.

“The event aims to make that initiative a concrete, caring reality here in our region,” said Marian.

For information, call 438-0428, or email nwveteranresources@gmail.comor visit www.healingcommunities4veterans.com.