JACKSONVILLE, Fla., March 6, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) helped injured veterans form a fantasy football league and compete during the regular 2017 football season — from their initial draft picks in August to a recent award dinner — all for the right to hoist the coveted WWP Golden Canteen trophy. This is the group's second year of friendly competition.
"Any time I get to do something positive with my fellow warriors that takes me away from the stresses of reality, then I'm in," said 2017 league champion and Army veteran Carlos De León. "We had a great time and most importantly, I believe it helped in my recovery."
"I joined this league because it reminded me of when I was on active duty," said Navy veteran Robert Watts. "My entire shop used to energetically participate in fantasy football. It bought back so many good memories for me and helped me socialize with a great group of veterans."
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., March 1, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) invited injured veterans and local students from Episcopal School to play flag football for camaraderie and exercise.
"Being in a competitive atmosphere as part of a team again was great," said Army veteran Vinny Mitchell. "I was glad to see some old familiar faces, but playing with students let me know I'm definitely getting older. I think everyone had fun."
Flag football was popularized by American World War II veterans on military installations all over the world in the 1940s. Group activities like playing flag football with WWP help veterans with their recovery regimen.
BROOMFIELD, Colo., March 1, 2018 -- Vail Resorts announced a new campaign that will honor America's service members and give back to several veterans service organizations, including Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP). Vail Resorts will make a $1 donation to WWP for every 2018-2019 Vail Resorts season pass purchased which, based on the 2017-18 sales numbers, could exceed 750,000 passes sold.
"The generosity of our supporters enables Wounded Warrior Project to provide life-changing programs at no cost to the warriors we serve," said Gary Corless, WWP chief development officer. "The needs of wounded veterans are great and growing, but partners like Vail Resorts provide us with critical resources that allow us to meet those challenges head-on. We're extremely grateful for their support."
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Feb. 26, 2018 -- Michael Richardson, the vice president for independence services and mental health at Wounded Warrior Project®(WWP), received IBCCES' annual Innovator Award at the International Symposium on Cognitive Research and Disorders (ISCRD) Monday evening.
IBCCES (The International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards), a Jacksonville-based organization that provides globally recognized credentials to professionals who work with people that have special needs, chose Richardson to receive this honor for his leadership within Wounded Warrior Project and its Warrior Care Network®.
IBCCES bestows the Innovation Award to professionals who have demonstrated a commitment to improving patient outcomes using new ways of thinking. These professionals have gone above and beyond to shape the future of healthcare using innovative techniques, forging new partnerships, and moving the entire industry forward.
SAN ANTONIO, Feb. 26, 2018 -- Over the past five years, San Antonio-based Allcat Claims Service has supported Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) through employment opportunities for wounded veterans and fundraising events. Through a mutual relationship at the regional WWP office, Allcat founders Bart Hutton, Mark Weekley, and John Weakly have grown Allcat's support of WWP rapidly over the years.
"We stand for those who have stood for us," said Bart Hutton, Allcat CEO. "Allcat chooses to focus our efforts on giving to an organization that has proven it can make a valuable difference in our community and far beyond – Wounded Warrior Project. Allcat is proud to give to an organization like Wounded Warrior Project, who helps support our veterans who served bravely down range."
FORT STEWART, Ga., Feb. 22, 2018 -- Veterans with service-related health issues received face-to-face assistance from Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) during a Soldier and Family Assistance Center Semi-Annual Growth Progression Strength (GPS) event at Fort Stewart, Georgia. WWP's Benefits Service team has set an unprecedented record, securing more than $85.4 million in annualized monetary benefits for wounded warriors in fiscal year 2017 alone.
With a success rate of 91 percent this past fiscal year, WWP's Benefits Service program helps injured veterans navigate the complexities of the Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to obtain the care they need.
TUCSON, Ariz., Feb. 22, 2018 -- With the help of an experienced artist, injured veterans and their guests created beautiful artwork to decorate their homes during a recent Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connection event. The gathering provided an opportunity to add new friends to their social circles in a supportive and relaxed environment.
"I ran into and talked with two warriors I knew from years ago," said Air Force veteran Jerry Honeycutt, "and it was great seeing familiar faces. This event has inspired me to get more involved with other Wounded Warrior Project events in the future."
Isolation is one of the most significant struggles wounded warriors deal with after serving their country. It can be difficult knowing how to overcome that challenge and rekindle bonds similar to those formed in the military.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 21, 2018 -- It is estimated 500,000 of this generation of wounded veterans live with the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Another 320,000 suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI). There are few proven methods to diagnose and treat the signature wounds of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Not every veteran living with these ailments responds the same to specific treatment.
To help, Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is working with Cohen Veterans Bioscience (CVB) to identify and study biomarkers that could improve treatment options. A biomarker is a measurable substance indicative of a disease or infection. For veterans, a specific biomarker found in a blood sample can confirm a PTSD diagnosis and the potential to respond to treatment.
By studying these substances, researchers hope to better target PTSD treatment in veterans and other trauma survivors.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Feb. 20, 2018 -- Wounded warriors from Jacksonville, Florida, recently gathered at Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) headquarters to incorporate yoga in their healthy workout routine. Many Americans regularly wish for better sleep and more mobility in their daily lives, but it's especially desirable for wounded veterans who deal with both visible and invisible wounds of war. Yoga has become a popular choice among warriors and their family members to meet health and wellness goals for the new year.
"I've never done yoga before," said U.S. Navy wounded warrior Vinnie Godette from Jacksonville, Florida. "It was more intense than I imagined. You're engaging so much of your body without exerting constant force, so it gives me other workout options to mix into my daily routine outside of weights and a treadmill."
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., Feb. 17, 2018 -- Veterans gathered to bond and learn adaptive winter sports techniques from experienced instructors at the Arizona Snowbowl. During the two-day-adaptive ski and snowboard experience with Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP), some veterans with injuries opted for adaptive winter equipment, which helped them enjoy the slopes, along with the camaraderie of others.
"I truly believe this event helps me all year," said Marine Corps veteran Efrin Vargas, who also attended last year's Snowbowl event. "I get to clear my mind and be around veterans who understand me. This is truly something I look forward to, and I'm very grateful to be a part of it."
"I always want to challenge myself physically and mentally, despite being 65 years old," said Army veteran Terry Flynn. "I knew this event would provide that challenge, since I have very limited experience with either skiing or snowboarding. Wounded Warrior Project is the only organization I know of that consistently reaches out to support warriors with these kinds of events."