A Resource to Support Veterans — and Ways for Clinicians to Use It Too
July 13, 2017 | 5-minute read
Clinicians: A Veteran-to-Veteran connection can be a key step in engaging with a Veteran who may be unfamiliar with mental health conditions and treatment — and may not be thinking about treatment at all. The hundreds of authentic Veteran stories on MakeTheConnection.net can help “fill that gap” when you’re working with Veteran patients.
“Something about hearing another Veteran talking about similar experiences seems to be the missing link for a lot of our Veterans,” says Jade Wolfman-Charles, a clinical psychologist at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
One video can really change someone’s perspective.Sue Fabeck, MSW, Suicide Prevention Coordinator, VA
Sitting down with a Veteran and finding a story that they can relate to can be a powerful tool: The videos on MakeTheConnection.net let Veterans know they’re not alone and introduce them to the fact that treatment works and recovery is possible. The filter on the website can help you find a video of a Veteran whose experience mirrors your patient’s — down to service era, military branch, gender, life events and experiences, and mental health signs, symptoms, and conditions. Start by selecting the military branch here, or do an advanced search in the video gallery.
“Often we’ll refer [Veterans] to the site, and suggest they go home and check out some of the videos,” says Margret Bell, director for Education and Training with the National Military Sexual Trauma Support Team. “It really can be a very validating and helpful experience for them.”
Watch the video below to learn how you can use MakeTheConnection.net to support the Veterans you work with, and find more information for clinicians.