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Maryland National Guard (MDNG) Reintegration Initiative LTC Michael Gafney.

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Presentation on theme: "Maryland National Guard (MDNG) Reintegration Initiative LTC Michael Gafney."— Presentation transcript:

1 Maryland National Guard (MDNG) Reintegration Initiative LTC Michael Gafney

2 Maryland National Guard Armories Deploying Soldiers REINTEGRATION Frederick` White Oak Annapolis Easton Pikesville Dundalk Glen Burnie Edgewood Elkton Towson

3 REINTEGRATION The road home is longer, steeper and tougher and the numbers are in. [From the DOD Task Force of Mental Health, June 2007 Report] At 90-120 days after re-deployment 49% of National Guard Soldiers report psychological symptoms Within 12 months 10-25% have clinically significant PTSD 30-35% of soldiers who return to college drop out in the first semester Within 12 months 20% plan to separate or divorce In an anonymous survey of 292 returning National Guardsman: – 36 percent reported relationship problems with spouse and children; – 27 percent reported significant depression; – 24 percent reported alcohol abuse; and – 43 percent reported problems with anger and aggression. –From Minnesota Reintegration Program: –10% of returning soldiers are unemployed or underemployed 15% more are unemployed or underemployed by 60 days –Each returning soldier impacts 12 Family members 40 Co workers, friends, acquaintances.

4 Educate and Empower Reserve Components, Families & Communities to successfully transition from Warrior to Citizen- Soldier by providing information, services, referral and proactive outreach opportunities for RC service members and families throughout the entire deployment cycle: PURPOSE Phase 1: Upon Alert Phase 2: During Deployment Phase 3: After Deployment (Reintegration)

5 REINTEGRATION All combat veterans experience combat Operational stress. - The majority of combat veterans handle their stress very well. - A significant minority develop PTSD and require extensive help. - ” IF YOU WENT TO WAR AND WEREN’T CHANGED, YOU WERE CRAZY BEFORE YOU LEFT.” COMBAT STRESS

6 Reintegration AC vs RC Mandatory Soldier Funding On Base On-Base Medical On-Base Support Families in Proximity Voluntary – Restricted Unfunded 23 Counties, 3 Municipalities, 84 Communities VA/Limited TRICARE 1-800 # or Civilian 300 mile separation “Ft Maryland”Fort Riley vs

7 MD Reunion is an event, after which we remove the yellow ribbon Reintegration is a process that Requires training before, during and beyond the yellow ribbon BEYOND THE YELLOW RIBBON Beyond the Yellow Ribbon

8 Force Activation From Citizen Soldier to Warrior –From Security to Insecurity –From Safety to Danger –From Comfort to Discomfort –From Order to Chaos, Law to Lawlessness –From Cooperation to Survival –From Trust to Mistrust

9 REINTEGRATION From Warrior To Citizen –From Insecurity To Security –From Danger To Safety –From Chaos To Order –From Discomfort To Comfort –From Survival To Thriving –From Mistrust To Trust

10 MISSION The MDNG will train and resource every combat veteran and their family, for a safe, healthy and successful reintegration into their community, school and job following deployment.

11 TAG’s INTENT Every unit will support every soldier, and their family, throughout the entire deployment cycle (Pre-deployment, Deployment, Demobilization, Reintegration). “LOOK ‘EM IN THE EYE”

12 OBJECTIVES -Every MDNG combat veteran, and their family is able to successfully deal with the effects of combat operational stress. -Every Maryland community with a NG armory, will be trained to help combat veterans and families successfully deal with the effects of combat operational stress. -Under the Governor’s leadership, a coalition of Federal, State, County and local agencies are networked to assist combat veterans and their families.

13 Phase 4 Training Continuous Reintegration Training for Community, Faith- Based and Educational Institutions Equipped for Successful Reintegration Phase 2 Training Phase 3 Training Family Readiness Group Training De-Mob Site Phase 1 Training Support Reintegration Training Cycle PreDeployment/ PreCombat Training Combat Operations

14 PreDeployment/PreCombat Training Purpose: Train soldiers and families to recognize, address and treat both combat stress and stress at home Conducted within 60 DAYS of Deployment/Mobilization Seminars Bullet Proof Mind Families Fears, Worries and Concerns How to Cope with Deployment Relaxation Techniques Service Providers -MDNG Outreach (DHMH) -State Surgeon -Mental Health (MDNG, MDDF)

15 Combat Operations Training Purpose: Provide ongoing training on the Effects of combat operational stress. Ongoing Training Provided During Combat Operations Topics Combat Stress Control Training De-Briefings MDNG Reintegration Training Service Providers -Chaplain -Combat Stress Control Team -Psychologist

16 Family Reintegration Academies Purpose: To empower and resource families so they can address the effects of combat operational stress and reintegration issues. Conducted within 45 Days before Unit returns to the United States - Combat Stress -Making Marriage Work -Reconnecting Soldiers with their Children -Parenting a Single Soldier -Coping With Extended Deployments -Veterans Administration -MD DVA -Returning to Work – ESGR/DLLR -Tricare -Military OneSource -FAC/JAG/Taxes WorkshopsTargeted Audience -Spouses -Parents -Significant Others -Children

17 Phase 1 Training Purpose: Connect soldiers to service providers who can assist them in overcoming the challenges of reintegration through briefings and a workshop format AND -Enroll every soldier in the VA (1010EZ) -Inform soldier of their Veterans Benefits Conducted at Demobilization site immediately upon return to United States STATIONS/WORKSHOPS -MD DVA/State Benefits Rep -DLLR/ESGR -Chaplain/Taxes -VA/Vet Center BRIEFINGS -Reintegration Experience (Combat Veteran) -Law Enforcement (Sworn Department)

18 Phase 2 Reintegration Training Conducted Approximately 40 DAYS after Initial Event Purpose: Reconnect soldiers and families with service providers through workshops and round- robin stations. Allows for more personal contact with service providers. BRIEFING -Battlemind Training II- WORKSHOPS -Making Marriage Work- -Single Soldier Challenges- -Reconnecting With Your Children- STATIONS -TRICARE-MDNG Outreach -Education Benefits-ESGR/DEED -JAG-MD DVA -Taxes-Chaplain -VA Benefits-Unit ADMIN -VA Vet Center-Partners in Care -Military One Source

19 Phase 3 Reintegration Training Conducted Approximately 70 DAYS After Initial Event Purpose: Address negative behaviors related to combat stress. BRIEFINGS -Anger Management (3 hours) -Chemical Abuse Prevention (1.5 hours) -Compulsive Behaviors Prevention (1.5 hours) -Law Enforcement (1 hour)

20 Phase 4 Reintegration Training Conducted Approximately 100 DAYS After Initial Event Purpose: Conduct a thorough Post Deployment Health Re-assessment (PDHRA) of combat veterans. TRAINING PDHRA TB Tine SERVICE PROVIDERS -MDNG Medical-Veterans Service Organization -Chaplain-MD State Dept. of Veterans Affairs -U.S. Dept. of Labor-VA Vets Center Representative -ESGR-VA Medical Center Representative -MDDF

21 ‘Beyond the Yellow Ribbon’ Seminars Purpose: Educate community leaders about challenges of reintegration, and what they can do to assist combat veterans and their families successfully reintegrate back into the community. Continuous Community Reintegration Training SEMINAR TOPICS -Reintegration Experience -Challenges of Reintegration -How to Help Combat Vets -Helping Families of Combat Vets TARGET AUDIENCE - Mayors, Council Members -Clergy -County Commissioners -Veteran’s Service Organizations -Medical Professionals -Drinking Establishment Owners -Licensed Mental Health Providers -Educators

22 Faith Based Seminars Purpose: Assist clergy and lay leaders in their efforts to understand, support and minister to combat veterans and their families. Continuous Faith Based Reintegration Training SEMINAR TOPICS -Partners in Care -Reintegration Experience -Challenges of Reintegration -How to Minister to Combat Vets -Ministering to Families of Combat Vets TARGET AUDIENCE -Clergy -Parish Nurse -Youth Workers -Faith-Based Organizations -Para-Church Organizations

23 Education Seminars Purpose: Advise Higher Education administration, faculty and staff on the challenges of reintegration a combat veteran may face and the benefits that are available to veterans when they return to school. Continuous Educational Institution Training SEMINAR TOPICS -Reintegration Experience -Challenges of Reintegration Within the Classroom -Education Benefits Available to Veterans TARGET AUDIENCE -Administrators -Professors / Instructors -Counselors -Staff

24 Education Seminars to Support Children Purpose: Advise educators from Pre-K through High School on deployment and reintegration stress factors on school age children Continuous Educational Institution Training SEMINAR TOPICS -Effects of Stress on Learning -When a parent or sibling is deployed Behavioral Changes in a Child: When to Refer -Reintegration from Combat TARGET AUDIENCE -School Administrators -Youth Leaders -School Guidance Counselors -Sport Coaches

25 REINTEGRATION Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Bringing Maryland Soldiers all the way home

26 REINTEGRATION From Citizen Soldier to Warrior –From Security to Insecurity –From Safety to Danger –From Comfort to Discomfort –From Order to Chaos, Law to Lawlessness –From Cooperation to Survival –From Trust to Mistrust

27 REINTEGRATION From Warrior To Citizen –From Insecurity To Security –From Danger To Safety –From Chaos To Order –From Discomfort To Comfort –From Survival To Thriving –From Mistrust To Trust

28 REINTEGRATION Five Critical Challenges Warriors Must Face, Master And Accomplish –Overcome Alienation –Move from simplicity to complexity –Replace war with another form of high –Move beyond war and find meaning in life –Come to peace with self, God and others

29 REINTEGRATION TASK 1 Overcome alienation –From family –From friends –From co workers –From community

30 REINTEGRATION TASK 2 Move from simplicity to complexity –From self to others –From survival to thriving –From others thinking for you to responsibility –From no choices to overwhelming choices

31 REINTEGRATION TASK 3 Replace war with another high –War is an adventure –Nothing in civilian life matches the intensity –Speed kills: So do drugs, alcohol, etc… –How do you learn to accept life as it is?

32 REINTEGRATION TASK 4 We were soldiers and young once…but what are we now? –We have to find meaning and purpose outside of combat –We were someone before war and we will be someone after war –Or will be stuck in war forever?

33 REINTEGRATION TASK 5 Make peace with self, God and others –We may have done, or not done things that violate our moral code –We participated in the killing of other humans –Is there absolution or do we live with guilt, (real, false, survivors) forever?

34 REINTEGRATION Welcome us home. Affirm what we did for you. Support us with patience. Encourage us to reengage. Give us opportunities to succeed. WHAT CAN YOU DO?

35 “I WILL NEVER LEAVE A FALLEN COMRADE” Our Warriors deserve no less Because it is the right thing to do In the end, it will save lives WHY REINTEGRATION?

36 REINTEGRATION RESOURCES Federal Department of Veterans Affairs Department of Labor TRICARE Military One Source Department of Defense Maryland MDARNG Family Readiness Group Maryland Higher Education Commission Colleges Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene (MDNG Outreach) Dept. of Labor, Licensing and Regulation State Police Department of Revenue Department of Labor Maryland Defense Force Partners in Care Clergy Counties / local Mayors, Council members County Commissioners Veterans Service Organizations Educators Drinking Establishment Owners School / College Counselors Professors / Instructors Licensed Mental Health Professionals

37 Questions?


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