November is Warrior Care Month and leaders throughout the Army are planning events to recognize warriors in transition and their families and caregivers.
This year’s Warrior Care Month theme is “Army Strong — Family Strong: Caring for Wounded, Ill and Injured Soldiers by Supporting their Families and Caregivers.”
“The Army, U.S. Army Europe, the Army Medical Command and many others are grateful for the contributions of our warriors and their families, including local immediate family members as well as extended family members within and outside of Europe,” said Lt. Col. Michael Richardson, Warrior Transition Battalion-Europe commander.
The mission of WTB-Europe is to provide command and control, primary care and case management for warriors in transition to establish the conditions for their transition and to promote their timely return to the force or to civilian life.
The job of Soldiers assigned to a Warrior Transition Unit is to transition back to active duty or return with dignity and respect to civilian life with skills acquired while part of the WTU.
Colonel Richardson said the support and assistance is an essential element of the healing and recovery process for every wounded, ill and injured Soldier.
In addition to the WTB-Europe, family and caregivers are important sources of support.
“Families are so important for the successful transition of our warriors. They have to be included in every step of our program,” Colonel Richardson said.
To support the families and caregivers in their new role, many services traditionally focused on wounded, ill and injured Soldiers are expanding to support and involve families and caregivers as well, including social services, counseling, resiliency training and transition planning.
“We clearly have an obligation to rehabilitate and support Soldiers,” said Maj. Thomas Fulton, WTB-E executive officer. “The Army also recognizes an obligation to support families and caregivers.”
The need for increased family resilience is addressed in the Army’s Soldier Comprehensive Fitness Program and training for spouses and families. Caregiver legislation providing compensation, training and respite care was signed into law in May 2010 in the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act.
Soldier Family Assistance Centers operate at posts or garrisons throughout the U.S. and Europe as a one-stop for warriors in transition to find information and coordinate resources. For details, visit the IMCOM-Europe Soldier and Family Assistance Center Web site at http://tiny.cc/ncck7.
During Warrior Care Month, Warrior, transition units in the KMC will host a variety of events and activities to inform warriors and community members about Warrior Care and resiliency. These events will be announced on local AFN affiliates and in garrison newspapers.
(Courtesy of ERMC Public Affairs)