By unitedweroll on Oct 12, 2011 | In Military News and Support
VA Paralympic Program Lets Disabled Veterans Rediscover their Potential
“It’s about the entire rehab process.”
The VA Paralympic Program is designed to motivate, encourage, and sustain participation and competition in adaptive sports among disabled Veterans and service members. VA’s Office of National Veterans Sports Programs and Special Events works with VA staff, U.S. Paralympics, and community-based adaptive sports programs across the country to encourage disabled Veterans to redefine themselves by participating and competing in adaptive sports and creative arts. The program provides information and resources to disabled Veterans, those in their support networks, and the adaptive sports community.
Veterans training in eligible adaptive sports can apply for a monthly assistance allowance through the Paralympics Program if they meet the qualifying military standard for that particular sport. A Veteran may be eligible whether his/her disability is service-related or non-service-related disability.
In partnership with the U.S. Olympics Committee, VA provides grants to U.S. Paralympics member organizations, Paralympic Sports Clubs, and Veteran and military organizations nationwide to enhance and expand local community-based adaptive sports programs serving Veterans with physical, visual, or cognitive disabilities such as post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.
Veterans who participate in adaptive sports report less stress and reduced dependency on pain and depression medication. These disabled Vets also relate they have fewer secondary medical conditions like diabetes and hypertension, and experience higher achievement in education and employment and more independence.
Paralympic sports and adaptive sports are basically the same thing. Both “paralympic” and “adaptive” can be used when referring to recreational sports for those with a physical or visual disability.
The Paralympic Games is the second largest elite sports competition for people with a physical or visual disability and runs parallel to the Olympic Games. The best way to learn about opportunities is to talk to your VA clinical team who can help you choose the right sport. The U.S. Paralympics website also has a chart that will help you determine sports available to you based on your disability.
Veterans can participate in adaptive sports at any level for fun and recreation or to meet personal fitness goals. Those who are ready for the next level might consider training to become an elite athlete to possibly compete on the Paralympic level.
Financial assistance from VA may be available to you as a Veteran to offset the cost of equipment, participation and travel. The Veterans Health Administration also provides assistance through the Prosthetic & Sensory Aids Service program. To learn more about adaptive sports programs in your local community, talk to your VA clinical team or visit the Sports Club Finder.
There are six annual national programs for disabled Vets:
The National Veterans Summer Sports Clinic promotes rehabilitation of body and spirit by teaching summer sporting activities to Veterans with significant physical or psychological impairments. The clinic offers such sports as surfing, sailing, kayaking, track and field, and cycling to Veterans who are newly injured from amputations, traumatic brain injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder and other neurological disorders.
The National Disabled Veterans Winter Clinic promotes rehabilitation by instructing Veterans with disabilities in adaptive Alpine and Nordic skiing and introducing them to a number of other adaptive recreational activities and sports. Participants include Veterans with spinal cord injuries, amputations, traumatic brain injuries, neurological challenges and visual impairments.
The National Veterans TEE Tournament uses a therapeutic format to promote rehabilitation, fellowship and camaraderie among participants. The TEE tournament also provides legally blind and eligible disabled Veterans an opportunity to develop new skills and strengthen their self-confidence through adaptive golf and bowling events.
The National Veterans Wheelchair Games is the largest annual wheelchair sports competition in the world. It promotes rehabilitation through rigorous competition in basketball, rugby, softball, handcycling and other sports. This event offers 17 different sports to Veterans who use wheelchairs due to spinal cord injuries, amputations and neurological diseases.
The National Creative Arts Festival is a competition that recognizes Veterans’ creative accomplishments. It is the culmination of talent competitions in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music for Veterans treated in the VA’s national health care system.
The National Veterans Golden Age Games is a national multi-event sports competition and recreational program designed to improve the quality of life for all older Veterans, including those with a wide range of abilities and disabilities. This adaptive rehabilitative sports program for Veterans age 55 and older offers 14 different sports and recreational activities.
“Many of our Veterans have experienced traumatic injuries while at the peak of their physical conditioning,” Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki said. “Our partnership with the U.S. Olympic Committee aids in their recovery by allowing them to engage in therapeutic sporting events and competition right in their own communities.”
To find adaptive sporting events in their communities, disabled Veterans can visit the U.S. Paralympics website.
By unitedweroll on Oct 12, 2011 | In Military News and Support
VA Launches Outreach Campaign to Eliminate Homelessness Among Veterans
This email notice was just received at 10:32am today (10/12), which is listed as one of the dates where this event is already in progress in some locations. Hopefully this is a good step in the right direction, as we clearly need a lot of effort put into helping our homeless Veterans.
"Make the Call" Events Scheduled for 28 Communities Across the Nation
WASHINGTON (Oct. 12, 2011)- As part of its drive to end homelessness among Veterans by 2015, the Department of Veterans Affairs is launching a nation-wide outreach initiative, "Make the Call," to spread the message about its special programs to help homeless Veterans and their families to 28 communities across the nation in October.
"Those who have served this nation as Veterans should never find themselves on the streets, living without care and without hope," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki.
Shinseki noted that 28 communities - from Atlanta to Hawaii - will host special programs this fall highlighting local services for homeless Veterans, their families and those at risk of becoming homeless.
"Working with our partners in state and local government, the non-profit and the private sectors, we can restore our homeless Veterans and their families to the lives of dignity they've earned," Shinseki added.
This fiscal year, VA expects to spend $3.4 billion to provide health care to homeless Veterans and $800 million in specialized homeless programs. The latest studies say more than 75,000 Veterans are homeless on a typical night, and about 135,000 spend at least one night a year in a homeless shelter.
VA is encouraging family, friends and citizens in the community to "Make the Call" and help prevent and end homelessness among Veterans. Since March 2010, VA has offered a toll-free telephone number, staffed around the clock by trained professionals, to help homeless Veterans, their families and at-risk people. The number is 877-4AID-VET (or 877-424-3838).
Recently, VA has transformed its efforts in the fight against homelessness. It is changing from a program focus upon temporary, shelter-based services, to prevention, employment, permanent housing, and help to families and Veterans at risk of becoming homeless.
The special awareness and outreach programs in the 28 selected communities are in:
* Alaska - Anchorage, Oct. 12
* Arizona - Phoenix, Oct. 18-19
* California - San Francisco, Oct. 19; Los Angeles and San Diego, Oct. 12
* Colorado - Denver, Oct. 14
* District of Columbia - Oct. 14
* Florida - Miami, Oct. 21
* Georgia - Atlanta, Oct. 29
* Hawaii - Kauai, Oct. 14; Oahu, Oct. 17
* Illinois - Chicago, Oct. 12
* Louisiana - New Orleans, Oct. 22
* Massachusetts -Boston, Oct. 20
* Michigan - Detroit, Oct. 12
* Missouri - St. Louis, Oct. 17
* Montana -- Billings, Oct. 11
* Nevada - Las Vegas, Oct. 6
* New York - Canandaigua, Oct. 12; New York Harbor, Oct. 21
* North Carolina - Fayetteville, Oct. 12
* Ohio - Cleveland, Oct. 12
* Pennsylvania - Lebanon, Oct. 12
* South Dakota - Sioux Falls, Oct. 12
* Tennessee - Memphis, Oct. 11
* Texas - Houston, Oct. 20; Dallas, Oct. 18
* Washington - Seattle, Oct. 12
More information about VA's programs for homeless Veterans, at-risk Veterans and their families is available at www.va.gov/homeless.
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By unitedweroll on Oct 8, 2011 | In Military News and Support
Upcoming Highlights From United We Roll and Stardust Radio
For the Week of October 10 - 14, 2011
Coming up this next week, our United We Roll World Tour Show will be broadcast at its regular live time (as long as Mother Nature does not rearrange equipment with lightning or any other "surprises" ) on Tuesday, October 11th, starting at 2pm Central and will repeat at 6:30pm CT on Wednesday, October 12th. Our deployed guests will include:
1) CH/CPT Anthony Giamello who is currently on deployment with the 376th AEW/HQ where he is the pastor to the Catholic community, among other faith based duties. As a member of the ANG (Air National Guard), Father Giamello splits his time between active military service and in his community at home as Associate Pastor at St Johns The beloved. We salute Father Giamello for maintaining both lifestyles and for watching over our loved ones on deployment and faith guidance here at home.
2) We will have an outstanding visit with SSG Eric Ring who is coming into the 11th month of his third and final deployment to Iraq. On duty with HHC, 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 2-1 Advise & Assist Brigade, SSG Ring is a medic who shares so much information and a truly incredible visit with us.
Visits with soldiers such as SSG Ring brings comfort to our families here at home as we hear of the deep concern he has for those with whom he serves.
3) A great honor is upon us as we host a repeat visit with Col Paul Calvert, Commander of the Army's 2-1 Advise and Assist Brigade, and the unit that we have been following with visits every week during their year long deployment. We know that every member is incredibly busy with the wrap-up over there and are very honored that Col Calvert will be able to visit with us as they prepare to close their chapter on Iraq. This conversation looks back over the past several years as the "Big Red One" has been involved in Iraq through OIF and the newer OND (Operation New Dawn) and from the standpoint of this commander who cares so deeply for his unit's soldiers and families.
The second in our series of shows that are taking a very real look at issues our Veterans face each and every day will be broadcast on Monday and Thursday of this upcoming week. John Keith, an injured Navy Veteran himself, has founded an organization to help other Vets in a unique way and they are producing some great results. Called OIF Veteran Community, John will be here to tell us about the type of assistance they provide and how Vets from all dates of service can contact them. In addition, Americans from all walks of life can also participate and in less than 10 minutes of time and effort, can help to improve the quality of life for one and possibly more Vets. John will also tell us about the recent arrest of a man who used a fictitious military career to receive a huge amount of money from unsuspecting victims. This one hour show will be broadcast on Stardust Radio Monday, October 10th at 6:30pm Central and will repeat at appr 9am Central on Thursday, October 13th.
Rick Townsend will also be presenting Firebase Network at its usual weekly time period of 6pm Central on Sunday, October 9th. Rick’s show offers a variety of information for Vets and some very interesting guests.
We are proudly working on more specials to focus on both Active Duty & Veteran issues and will announce the dates of those broadcasts as soon as they are available.
For program updates and more information, check out the United We Roll Blog, located at www.stardustradio.com, click United We Roll page, click World Tour Blog button. News is also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/unitedweroll and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/JudiBUSA
By unitedweroll on Oct 4, 2011 | In Military News and Support
Release No: 220
Oct. 3, 2011
Air Force announces selections to captain
Air Force Personnel, Services and Manpower Public Affairs
RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas – The Air Force selected 126 first lieutenants for promotion during the 2011B Line of the Air Force Judge Advocate General Corps, Nurse Corps, Medical Services Corps and Biomedical Sciences Corps Quarterly Captain Selection Process.
The entire list can be found on the Air Force Personnel Center website here.
The board considered 128 lieutenants for promotion. The results are as follows:
Selection statistics in-the-promotion zone for captain:
LAF-J – 4 selected from 4 considered for a 100.0 percent select rate
NC – 58 selected from 59 considered for a 98.3 percent select rate
MSC – 22 selected from 22 considered for a 100.0 percent select rate
BSC – 42 selected from 43 considered for a 97.7 percent select rate
There were no lieutenants considered for promotion in the above-the-promotion zone for captain category.
For more information on promotions, visit the Air Force Personnel Services website at https://gum-crm.csd.disa.mil.
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By unitedweroll on Sep 27, 2011 | In Military News and Support
We are so proud and honored to have hosted interviews with a couple of these Heroes of Freedom and many other members of the units from the 2-1 Advise and Assist Brigade during their last deployment to Iraq. We congratulate the following four soldiers on their visits with the Audie Murphy Club Board representatives and wish them all an invitation to join some of the finest soldiers who have served our country - just as they have been and continue to be.
We salute Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, Sgt. 1st Class William Mackey, First Sgt. James Lower and Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell!
Deployed “Dagger” Brigade Soldiers attend Sergeant Audie Murphy Club Board
Photos by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C
(photos posted at www.facebook.com/unitedweroll)
BAGHDAD—Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, left, a gunnery sergeant with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and a Santa Rita, Guam, native, addresses senior enlisted leaders from throughout the Dagger Brigade during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Bell, who has earned two Purple Hearts during his current deployment, was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
Sgt. 1st Class William Mackey, right, a platoon sergeant with 1st “Dragon” Battalion, 63rd Armor Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and an Arkansas native, congratulates Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, center, a gunnery sergeant with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C and a Santa Rita, Guam, native, on his acceptance into the Sgt. Audie Murphy Club Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Bell, who has earned two Purple Hearts during his current deployment, was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
First Sgt. James Lower, first sergeant of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center, second from left, asks a question of Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell, left, an artilleryman with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C and a Colorado Springs, Colo., native, during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club Board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Colwell was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell, an artilleryman with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and a Colorado Springs, Colo., native, reports to the board during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Colwell was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
By unitedweroll on Sep 27, 2011 | In Military News and Support
CSI: Baghdad—‘Griffin’ Battalion Soldiers teach Iraqi Police crime scene investigation techniques
By 1st Lt. Richard Snyder, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C
BAGHDAD—Members of the Local Police Transition Team attached to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, “Griffin” Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center, hosted a gathering of Iraqi Police investigators from across Baghdad for a crime scene investigation training course Aug. 3 and 4 at Joint Security Station Justice, Iraq.
The two-day course, led by David Carpenter, a civilian police adviser with the LPTT and a Jacksonville, Fla., native, covered forensic evidence collection and tactical site exploitation, or taking evidence from a crime scene or suspect’s home or work area.
The emphasis on CSI is a result of the LPTT’s identification of the need for remedial training to bridge gaps in the IP’s traditional skill set.
“Historically, police cases have been compromised due to improper evidence collection,” said Sgt. 1st Class Roy Gibble, a military police platoon sergeant with HHC, STB, and a Wynonna, Okla., native. “However, with this training we expect to see some strong results, and Iraqi Police will have the required skills to manage crime scenes effectively and therefore help in the arrests and the legal process.”
The CSI training was part of what is an ongoing initiative to create enduring capabilities within the Iraqi Security Forces and ensure they have the capabilities they need to effectively enforce law and order long after U.S. forces leave the country. It is designed to establish the skill sets and create a group of experts who can, in turn, train their fellow Iraqis to have a lasting impact.
The training began with a classroom portion which covered subjects from how to approach a crime scene and how to provide security and cordon off the site, to ensuring proper photography and cataloguing of evidence.
Culminating with a practical exercise on the second day, the training required IP officers to walk into a simulated crime scene and put into practice what they had learned—from start to finish.
“The Iraqi Police were eager and willing to train,” said Sgt. Christian Alvarez, a military police team leader with HHC, STB and a Herington, Kan., native. “This is a strong indication of their ability to conduct independent security operations.”
Upon completion of the course, the IP investigators were presented Certificates of Completion by Lt. Col. John Turner, team chief with the LPTT attached to the STB.
Even as the United States decreases its footprint in Iraq, many units continue to aggressively train their Iraqi partners, allowing for Iraqi Security Forces to manage and secure the nation, as well as create component trainers capable of passing their skills along to others.
“It makes me proud to see the Iraqi Police’s hard work materialize, and I look forward to watching their success,” said Staff Sgt. Henry Pogue, a military police squad leader with HHC, STB and a Vine Grove, Ky., native.