With very few exceptions, individuals who join the armed forces make a lot of sacrifices.
While staying away from home and their families in a faraway land, they leave no stone unturned to protect us from enemies. Despite being aware that they may lose their lives, soldiers continue fighting for our safety and freedom.
Quite a few soldiers are fortunate enough to return home after retiring, whereas a few succumb to the wounds sustained while defending their motherland.
Aside from the physical baggage, the emotional baggage of veterans is quite heavy. Not many know that 7 out of every 100 military veterans have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Death, suffering, situational awareness, and hyper-arousal, to name a few, are contributors to PTSD in military veterans. That is why carrying out even the simplest task seems like an uphill battle.
During this crucial period, you can lend a helping hand to military veterans so that they can adjust to civilian life without trouble. On that note, this guide will walk you through five ways in which you can support the veterans of your community.
5 Easy Ways You Can Help Veterans
Want to empower, honor, and show gratitude to ex-members of the armed forces? Here are five simple things you can do to make a difference in the life of a veteran:
1.Give a Veteran a Free Ride
PTSD isn’t the only health condition veterans are diagnosed with. Because of the traumatic events encountered during military duty, veterans are often diagnosed with certain medical conditions that could be life-threatening.
Diseases such as kidney cancer, liver cancer, bladder cancer, lymphoma, and leukemia are common among veterans, especially those who were exposed to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune. As a result, they may have to take frequent trips to the Veterans Affairs medical facilities for treatment.
However, if they are a Camp Lejeune victim, they may have to file a Camp Lejeune compensation claim. Instead of letting them travel on their own to the Department of Veterans Affairs or the lawyer’s office, you can offer them a pick-and-drop service for their convenience.
Nevertheless, the attorneys of a law firm, TorHoerman Law, state that veterans need to prove that they were residing at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987. Otherwise, they won’t be eligible for compensation. In that case, you can even help them gather proof of residence at Camp Lejeune.
2.Help Build a Home for Severely Injured or Disabled Veterans
Severely injured veterans or those with physical disabilities need a disability-friendly home. Because military personnel don’t earn as much money as those employed in the civilian sector, they cannot afford to revamp their home and make them disabled-friendly.
By raising funds, you can build homes for disabled or severely injured veterans so that they can lead comfortable lives.
3.Provide Them With an Animal Companion to Help Them Heal
While therapy helps, an animal companion can help them heal and, of course, combat loneliness. Several non-profit organizations train shelter dogs such that they help veterans cope with emotional injuries they have sustained during their stay in the military camp.
Such dogs ease anxiety, depression, and stress in veterans by offering them unconditional love and support.
4.Pay the Bill for a Veteran’s Meal or Coffee
Anytime you see a veteran at a coffee shop or a restaurant, do not hesitate to pick the tab. If you don’t wish to reveal your identity, you can pay their bill anonymously by communicating with the owner or the manager.
You need not limit yourself to a latte or a meal. If you really wish to go that extra mile, pay for their grocery cart, medications, or, perhaps, a tank of petrol or gas.
5.Perform Household Chores or Home Repairs for a Veteran
Many veterans cannot perform basic household chores or home repairs due to a lack of funds, disability, or severe injury. Hence, you can help them by performing whatever chores they are struggling with. This way, you’ll be able to thank them for their services and gain tremendous satisfaction.
Helping Veterans in Your Community is the Best Way to Honor Them
Veterans and their family members do a lot for the country and its people, so it’s our responsibility to make their lives as easy and comfortable as possible.
If not financially, you can always help them by offering emotional support or helping them carry out day-to-day chores easily. Even showing gratitude will go a long way, but an act of kindness can last a lifetime.
Hence, if you know a veteran in your community, reach out to them and let them know that the sacrifices they’ve made are appreciated.