TAPS Receives Grant to Help Meet Increased Demand for Youth Services
Got Your 6 Award Will Allow for Increased Staff Support and Training Programs for Military Mentors Who Work with Children Grieving the Loss of a Loved One
ARLINGTON, Va. -The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) was recently awarded a $50,000 grant by Got Your 6, a campaign to unite nonprofit, Hollywood and government partners to empower veterans to lead in their communities. As one of 20 nonprofit Veteran Empowerment Coalition partners to support on-the-ground initiatives for veteran reintegration across the country, TAPS will use the grant to support its National Military Mentor Program, which increases the health and wellness of surviving military children grieving the loss of a loved one in the Armed Forces.
Each day, TAPS receives 14 new survivors seeking connection to grief resources and searching for understanding and comfort in a life that has been shaken from the sudden and traumatic loss of a loved one serving in our nation's Armed Forces, including many children coping with the loss of a parent or adult sibling. The grant will allow TAPS to fund personnel support and training programs that will help the organization to increase its total cadre of mentors from 8,000 to 10,000.
"Since its founding, TAPS has paired the children of America's Fallen Heroes with individual military mentors - service members and veterans representing every branch of the Armed Forces, who volunteer their time and are trained by TAPS to provide individual support to a grieving military child," said Bonnie Carroll, TAPS president and founder and a 2015 Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. "The mentoring relationship is mutually beneficial, supporting military families, specifically bereaved children, while at the same time offering therapeutic benefits to the service members and veterans volunteering as mentors. A high percentage of mentors note the dual therapeutic impact of their service as mentors, reporting feelings of connectedness to both fellow battle buddy mentors and traumatically bereaved children, noting that they view this service as a means of honoring fallen comrades."
Children connect initially to their mentors at TAPS Good Grief Camps, which are held throughout the year around the nation. In this setting, experienced children's bereavement professionals monitor the initial interaction to ensure it is a successful connection. Once this is established, the mentor and child remain in contact going forward, with many of these relationships lasting years.
Survivor seminars and Good Grief Camps are currently scheduled to be held in 2017 in Chicago; Colorado Springs, Colo.; Arlington, Va.; Austin, Texas; Tampa, Fla; Phoenix and San Diego. For more information about these seminars or to register, please visit our website. To learn more about becoming a TAPS volunteer, click here.
The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is the national organization providing compassionate care for the families of America's fallen military heroes and has offered support to more than 70,000 surviving family members of our fallen military and their caregivers since 1994. TAPS provides peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, grief seminars and retreats for adults, Good Grief Camps for children, case work assistance, connections to community-based care, online and in-person support groups and a 24/7 resource and information helpline for all who have been affected by a death in the Armed Forces. Services are provided free of charge. For more information go to www.taps.org or call the toll-free TAPS resource and information helpline at 1.800.959.TAPS (8277).
ABOUT GOT YOUR 6
Got Your 6 is a campaign that unites nonprofit, Hollywood, and government partners. Got Your 6 believes that veterans are leaders, team builders, and problem solvers who have the unique potential to lead a resurgence of community across the nation. As a coalition, Got Your 6 works to integrate these perspectives into popular culture, engage veterans and civilians together to foster understanding, and empower veterans to lead in their communities. For more information, visit www.gotyour6.org.
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