Army Veteran Provides Peer Support to Female Warriors at Mental Health Workshop
(4 months ago)
SARASOTA, Fla: At a recent Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) mental health workshop in Tampa, Florida, a group of women veterans received critical peer support from a fellow female warrior who experienced similar hurdles after military service.
These workshops include teambuilding exercises and goal-setting agendas that help warriors in their recovery processes - even after they've gone home. These gatherings are often the first time warriors leave their homes to connect with others in their communities.
"These opportunities are invaluable for female injured veterans," said Kendra Simpkins, U.S. Army veteran and WWP Peer Support warrior mentor. "There are so few women warriors, but we all share a common bond - learning to cope with similar struggles. It's important for us to find opportuntities that will build a strong support system among each other."
Through the generous support of donors, WWP offers veterans specialized mental health programs and services - tailored to each warrior's specific needs and free of charge. One such program is its multi-day mental health workshops that are offered as all-male, all-female, or all-couples. These workshops provide safe, private environments for warriors to express themselves and share their experiences. By the end, warriors share lessons learned from the activities that impacted their personal struggles most and set achievable goals for their recoveries.
Reconnecting warriors to one another in the civilian world is critical to healing, which is why WWP incorporates its Peer Support program into each workshop by fusing supportive rehabilitation with the military adage "Leave No Man Behind." A wounded warrior who has demonstrated leadership strengths and the ability to help fellow wounded veterans in need attends each workshop. These Peer Support warriors, like Kendra, act as life lines for WWP teammates and warriors.
"When Wounded Warrior Project holds these mental health workshops that connect women warriors, and serves them through female-focused activities that involve local community support, warriors become empowered to succeed in their recovery," Kendra said.