FEATURED CONNECTIONS

Warriors at Ease teachers support military and veteran populations and serve as a bridge in civilian communities.  These are some of the national organizations where our instructors are making a difference.  Service members, veterans, and families can find valuable services and teachers can find meaningful opportunities through these outstanding organizations.

Cohen Veterans Network offers short-term, client-centered therapy for a variety of mental health issues including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, adjustment issues, anger, grief and loss, family issues, transition challenges, relationship problems, and children’s behavioral problems. Services are offered at no or low-cost and centered on therapy and counseling options that are the current, evidence-based, best practices.  There are dozens of clinics across the country, include locations in each of our Warriors at Ease key regions

The Mission Continues empowers veterans adjusting to life at home to find purpose through community impact. They deploy veterans on new “missions” in their communities so their actions will inspire future generations to serve. WAE teachers and students serve as “Service Platoon Leaders” and our organization has been involved in their fellowship programs.

Team Red, White & Blue enriches the lives of America’s veterans by connecting them to their local community through physical and social activity, including vibrant yoga programs. WAE teachers serve as leaders within Team RWB and many teach ongoing yoga classes as part of their community outreach programs. Many WAE teachers also offer yoga as part of Team RWB’s annual Run as One and other special events.

PsychArmor Institute is a nonprofit that provides free education and support for all Americans to engage effectively with the military community. PsychArmor recruits nationally recognized subject matter experts to create and deliver online courses about issues relevant to the military and veteran communities. Our self-paced courses are delivered within nine schools geared toward military culture, healthcare providers, employers, k-12 educators, higher education, volunteers, caregivers and families, transitioning service members, and communities serving veterans. We provide critical resources to all Americans who work with, live with, and care about Veterans.

The Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program is a DoD-wide effort to promote the well-being of National Guard and Reserve members, their families and communities, throughout the deployment cycle. Through Yellow Ribbon events, service members and loved ones connect with local resources before, during, and after deployments. WAE teachers share yoga and iRest meditation at Yellow Ribbon events.

Meghan’s Foundation raises awareness and support for veterans and active-duty military who may be experiencing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They
offer trauma-sensitive yoga and meditation programs that are offered free of charge for military members, veterans, and their spouses or partners. Meghan’s Foundation funds WAE outreach classes in some locations.

Boulder Crest Retreat is a rural wellness center with sites in Virginia and Arizona that are dedicated exclusively to combat veterans and their families. They provide short-duration, high-impact retreats that incorporate yoga, mindfulness, and much more. Their Family Retreat program provides combat veterans and their families the opportunity to stay, for two to seven nights, and their PATHH programs focus on combat-related stress. Boulder Crest Retreat is focused on providing combat veterans and their families with the rest, re-connection and re-charging so they can learn to live in the present and focus on their future. WAE faculty and curriculum has supported the development of Boulder Crest programs.

Army Wellness Center

Army Wellness Centers (AWC) are located on Army installations worldwide. They are part of an Army-wide wellness initiative that empowers sustainable behavior change through evidence-based education and awareness using advanced technology. The primary goal of the AWC program is to enhance the self-efficacy of individuals to maintain lifelong healthy behaviors. AWCs are integrated with the Patient-Centered Medical Home as part of the Comprehensive Care Plan. Services are offered free of charge to service members, retirees, and their families. There is currently an initiative underway to develop 38 AWCs worldwide. AWCs incorporate mindfulness and breathing practices as part of stress reduction education and use equipment that measures Heart Rate Variability to verify the effectiveness of these practices. WAE teachers support ongoing operations in collaboration with AWC staff as well as support special events.

The Wounded Warrior Project’s (WWP) mission is to honor and empower wounded warriors. WWP offers a variety of programs and services for Post 9/11 veterans and is equipped to serve warriors with every type of injury – from the physical to the invisible wounds of war. WAE teachers share yoga in support of WWP special events and serve in various capacities within WWP’s Physical Health and Wellness and Combat Stress Recovery programs. WWP has also contributed yoga mats for WAE teachers serving WWP alumni.

The Exalted Warrior Foundation (EWF) was founded by WAE senior faculty member Annie Okerlin and offers adaptive yoga instruction designed to support the healing and sustained health of wounded warriors in the active military and veteran communities — including some of our most traumatically injured warriors in recovery at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and the James A. Haley VA Hospital. WAE teachers support EWF yoga classes and retreats.

Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) offers quality-of-life programs that directly support military readiness by providing a variety of activities and services. MWR offers worldwide support through a comprehensive network of programs and services at each installation.  MWR serves active duty service members and their families as well as civilian DoD employees, military retirees, and other eligible participants.  Visit the Military One Source to visit MWR programs associated with each branch of service.

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Higher Ground hosts week-long camps in Idaho, California and New York for injured service members, veterans and their supporters that are completely free of charge to all participants. Each camp invites eight to ten veterans or service members and their significant others to form a new “unit” and participate in recreational activities from winter sports to water sports to fly fishing, equine and beyond. Higher Ground’s mission is to provide the most effective therapeutic recreation service to military families confronted with traumatic brain injury (TBI), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), military sexual trauma (MST), and polytrauma through the use of evidence-based practices and the sustained continuum of care necessary for a successful reintegration into their families and communities. Yoga, meditation and other mindful movement practices are incorporated into Higher Ground’s programs by WAE-trained staff.

No Barriers’ mission is to unleash the potential of the human spirit through transformative experiences, tools, and inspiration. They offer outdoor expeditions to veterans with service-connected disabilities including but not limited to visual impairment, amputation, PTSD, TBI, and severe burns. WAE teachers and students have participated in the No Barriers Warriors outdoor expeditions.

Give An Hour’s mission is to develop a national network of volunteers capable of responding to both acute and chronic conditions that arise within our society. By harnessing the skill and expertise of volunteer professionals (both licensed clinicians and certified “alternative providers”) they increase the likelihood that those in need receive the support and care they deserve. Give and Hour is a way for veterans to get free, confidential counseling as well as other services. WAE teachers volunteer their time, serving in their role as a licensed clinician and/or certified yoga/meditation teacher.

The USO strengthens America’s military service members by keeping them connected to family, home and country, throughout their service to the nation. They do this through countless acts of caring, comfort, connection and support, to include hosting WAE yoga classes that are free for veterans, service members, and their families.

U.S. Department of Veteran’s Administration (VA) is focused on three areas: benefits, burials and memorials, and healthcare which is delivered through 21 different Veteran Integrated Service Networks (VISN). Many VA facilities now employ yoga and meditation teachers as part of a nation-wide shift to VA’s new “Whole Health System.” Given our
specialized training, WAE teachers are well-suited for these positions. WAE teachers are currently sharing yoga in VA hospitals, clinics and Vet Centers. Vet Centers can be a great way to get started with offering yoga to local veterans in the VA system. Vet Centers provide a broad range of counseling, outreach, and referral services to eligible veterans. Veterans do not have to be enrolled in VA healthcare in order to take advantage of services at a Vet Center.

The Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, New York hosts annual veterans yoga retreats for both men and women. These retreats are facilitated by WAE faculty and are focused on trauma-sensitive yoga and meditation as well as strategies and practices that support veterans in transition from the military to civilian life or those simply moving from life challenge to personal growth. Scholarships are offered to veterans who apply early. You will find registration links on our WAE website, social media, and in our newsletters.

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Team Rubicon is an international non-profit disaster response organization that unites the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy emergency response teams, free of charge, to communities affected by disasters. WAE teachers serve as leaders and volunteers in this organization and offer yoga as a support to other volunteers as well as those affected by disaster.

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