It's That Time Again

Remember last year, when y'all raised an enormous amount of money for Heifer International, and we sent sheep to a community overseas?

This year, I'm hoping you'll join me again in raising money for another good cause … homeless women veterans.

Whether or not you support the war in Iraq (I don't); whether or not you believe women should serve in the armed forces (I do); whether or not you believe in Santa (I'm Santagnostic, actually) … the truth is that many women veterans, who have made considerable sacrifices for our country, are not getting a fair shake now that they're home.

Women veterans seem to get the short end of the very short stick that returning soldiers are asked to hold. (For instance, of the some 1,400 V.A. hospitals and clinics, currently only 27 house inpatient PTSD programs, and of these, just 2 serve women exclusively. Almost one in three veterans returning from Afghanistan and Iraq confronts mental health problems. You do the math.) Approximately 4% of the homeless veterans in VA programs are women — and that doubles to 8% in community-based (non-VA) programs. Women have special health care needs; many have dependent children.

With women making up 14% of the nation's combat forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, the number of homeless women vets is rising every day. By donating to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, we can help develop programs to support women vets as they return home.

So this year I'm hoping we can raise $1500 for homeless women veterans, by Dec 24. (It may not sound like much, but every little bit helps.)

The day we hit the goal, I'll post a new full-length "Secret Lives of Dresses", and for every day between Reach-The-Goal Day and Dec 24, I'll post a Secret Lives drabble, just like last year.

To donate, just click on the widgety thingy below. It's all run by Changing The Present; I won't see who donated or how much. (Credit cards only; if you want to pay by Paypal, email me and we'll work something out.)

http://www.changingthepresent.org/flash/banners/drives/horizontal_banner.swf?env=production&drive_id=821

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0 thoughts on “It's That Time Again

  1. Thanks Erin! I am a women veteran, thankfully, not homeless. I did develop severe carpal tunnel in both wrists due to my work as a military journalist and editor. The Army caused it, the Army diagnosed it,the Amy admits it was caused by my work. The VA said I didn’t have Carpal Tunnel, and ” I didn’t go to the doctor often enough when I got out,” for my claim to be verified. Ummm–I had no health insurance or a job when I first got out … and then what? I am supposed to be contanstly missing work to go to the doctor when I start my new job? I have a friend with PTSD, she has been missing for more than a year. The VA kept moving her appointments, she went off her meds, lost her house, her kids — I don’t even know where she is. I had to find a home for her dog, and her cat. I know she was kidnapped sometime around February 2007. They caught the guys in Georgia, but I have not heard from her since Feb. 17, 2007. If this charity cna prevent a similar story, it is well worth it. You can count me in to help.

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  2. Theresa, I’m very sorry about your friend, too. What a heartbreaking story. Sounds like she was/is lucky to have you, at least!Also sorry about the way you got left holding the bag with your CarpalTunnel Syndrome in it.Kudos, Erin, on organizing this charity drive this year.

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  3. Erin, You never cease to amaze me. Thanks for doing this. I, too, am a woman veteran – gainfully employed, and with a great family and husband. However, I know the same stories that Theresa does. Women are an overlooked and underappreciated minority in the military; yes, even in 2007. Let’s take care of our women veterans! PS – While on active duty, I made a knock-off uniform skirt, and passed an admiral’s inspection wearing it. (smile)

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  4. Thank you so much for thinking of this – and of all of we women who return from war. Reintegration into civilian life is hard enough without the physical/psychological/spiritual wounds caused by war. As a veteran, and a woman, I offer my most sincere thanks.

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  5. Um, maybe it is just me, but the “widgety thing” isn’t working for me. Instead I had to go to the Changing the Present main page and search.

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