Outstanding Corporate Citizen of the Year Veteran and Military Advocate Nominee
Tell us why and how you support the region’s active-duty/reserve military and/or national intelligence community, their families and/or veterans.
EveryMind is committed to supporting those who have fought for the freedom we all enjoy. More than ever our veterans and their families need access to information, resources and support. ServingTogether is our commitment to those who have served us. EveryMind’s ServingTogether program provides education, direct service, and coordination of resources for service members, veterans, and their families throughout the National Capital Region.
We accomplish this through:
· Veteran Peer Navigators available to directly support the community in person, by phone, and through email to better access resources and services available in the region.
- Since 2011, ServingTogether has provided Peer Navigation services to more than 572 clients seeking services for issues such as employment, financial aid, and housing support.
· Community education seminars and workshops that present topics relevant to providers serving the military and veteran community.
- ServingTogether has trained more than 1,190 professionals and community members through its continuing education seminars and Mental Health First Aid courses. At the 2016 seminar, an annual training for mental health professionals, 96% of attendees said that the content enhanced their professional expertise.
- ServingTogether launched Veteran Collaboratives in Fairfax and Loudoun Counties in Northern Virginia, and Montgomery and Frederick Counties in Maryland.
What makes your company stand out compared to other companies participating in CSR?
As a program of EveryMind, ServingTogether is the only program of its kind providing this level of community collaboration and coordination for the approximately 300,000 veterans in the National Capital Region. In 2008 and 2014, Montgomery County and Northern Virginia respectively had assessments completed to determine the needs of veterans. Both studies found an overwhelmingly fragmented system that required an entity to bring together local, state/regional, and national resources in a coordinated way so veterans and service members could more easily access services.
Serving Together was created in 2011 as the collective-impact model to provide clear guidance to military and veteran communities on accessing the resources and support they need through a coordinated system of care. ServingTogether has been successfully working in Montgomery County for the past six years. Building upon this success, Serving Together expanded its work into Northern Virginia (NoVA) two years ago. The NoVA region includes Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, Arlington, and Alexandria Counties. Serving Together furthered its expansion to include Frederick County in FY16. Additional program expansion into other parts of the region is planned for FY17 through new funding received from the Weinberg Foundation. ServingTogether is involved with various councils, committees and initiatives in the region, including:
- Veteran and Military Business Council (NoVA Chamber)
- NVTC VEI Task Force
- DC Give An Hour Community Collaborative
- Veterans Council (PW Chamber)
- Nonprofit Initiative (Loudoun Chamber)
- NSA Bethesda Family Plus Collaborative
- Fort Belvoir Collaborative
- ISFAC Joining Forces
- NoVA Veteran Collaborative Executive Committee
- Frederick Veterans Support Network
Do you believe contributing back to the community allows your company to have a deeper connection with its clients/customers?
ServingTogether is a team that understands the military experience and culture. Each team member has a military story, and continues to serve and strengthen the community through their work with ServingTogether. Our team has experienced the culture firsthand, and now serves as a valuable and personable connection for veterans and military families that reach out for the resources they have earned. Our Program Director and Peer Navigators are veterans themselves. Our Program Managers are active duty military spouses. Our team is passionate about the program and connecting veterans to the resources that strengthen, support, and further individual potential and the relationship with their community. Military and veterans appreciate when they call our team and can immediately see that we understand the military culture and can “speak the language.” They feel more confident working with our Peer Navigators and are more willing to open up to us about their current needs. This inspires our team to provide a holistic approach, peel back the layers of what is going on to help find solutions for the veterans.
What are some events or causes that inspire you and your team?
“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation.” -George Washington
Our team is inspired by the words of George Washington to treat our veterans with respect and appreciation for their service and dedication to our country. This motivates our team to keep our focus and continually be listening, understanding, and collaborating with both our community partners and our veteran families to improve lives and strengthen the future for those who have given to our country.