Health & Wellness
VAVETS provides support services to Virginia Veterans and their families as a means to ensure they continue to maintain or improve their health and wellness. As resources are available, we will plan, schedule and conduct a variety of activities and events that promote healthy lifestyles.Our activities will include local health screenings and speakers who will address a variety of topics that will be offered free to our members and their families. These activities will be specifically tailored to each of our four regions (NOVA, Richmond, Hampton and Roanoke). All events will be posted to our events sections and a no cost registration will be required to ensure we have a facility large enough to accommodate our members and their families. If you require financial support for health and wellness, or you would like to take advantage of one of our programs below, please visit our Personal and Family section and submit a request for support.
The National Institutes of Health estimates that, of the approximately 2 million veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, up to 20% suffer from post-traumatic stress (PTS). Veterans of previous wars may also continue to experience symptoms of PTS. PTS is an anxiety disorder that develops as a result of exposure to a traumatic event and is characterized by three categories of symptoms.
here Symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress:
- Recurring intrusive thoughts related to the trauma (e.g., flashbacks, dreams)
- Avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma, emotional numbness, and social withdrawal
- Symptoms of physiological arousal such as hyper-vigilance, exaggerated startle response, anxiety, difficulty sleeping, irritability, and hyper-reactivity.
Traditional treatments for Veterans’ PTS are currently insufficient. A man or woman with the courage to face war does not easily embrace the role of a victim with a diagnosis of PTS. Rather than depending on a drug or therapist, VAVETS will offer our veterans value learning tools which they can use to help themselves. VAVETS will also offer free-of-charge to our Virginia Veterans and their families non-invasive resiliency activities that will help them heal holistically. Some examples include: sports competition, music, painting, fishing, biking, running, yoga and meditation. This program will change and vary by our regional locations but the goal is participation and a smile.
Choose Your Adventure
VAVETS and the West Virginia University Alumni Association have partnered to allow Virginia Veterans and their Families to participate in two camps this summer. Details are provided below. Those interested in attending under VAVETS sponsorship should contact us.
JULY 2-9, 2017 – AUGUST 6-13, 2017
Mountaineer families are one of a kind, so their camp should be, too. While your kids bounce from activity to activity, you choose your own adventures. Of course, you’ll still get to share your tales over a lakeside campfire, enjoy chef prepared meals and participate in organized alumni camp events together. Best of all, your big WVU family will always be just a horseshoe-toss away.Take the Family…
JULY 13-16, 2017
Mountaineers, get ready to say yes to four adrenaline-filled days of pure adventuring — WVU style. Mountaineer Adventure Camp is all about filling your lungs, testing your limits, and seeing just how much fun you can string together in the name of unbridled Mountaineer pride. Yeah, we thought you’d like that.Join the Adventure…
Wreaths Across America – Join us on December 16, 2017
Each December on National Wreaths Across America Day, our mission to Remember, Honor and Teach is carried out by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery, as well as over 1,200 additional locations in all 50 U.S. states, at sea, and abroad. VAVETS has partnered with Wreaths Across America to raise funds that will cover placing a wreath on the grave of a Virginia Veteran in the locations noted below.
Union Cemetery (VAUNCL): Graves: 600
Chestnut Grove Cemetery (VACGCH) Graves: 740
Alexandria National Cemetery (VAANCA) Graves:5001
Quantico National Cemetery (VAQNCT) Graves: 34772
Culpeper National Cemetery (VACNCC) Graves: 8000
Virginia Cemetery (VAVVRC) Graves: 175
Balls Bluff National Cemetery (VABBNL) Graves: 50
Arlington National Cemetery (ARLING) Graves: 245000
Manassas Cemetery (VAMCFM) Graves: 96
Oak Hill Cemetery (VAOHCF) Graves: 1000
Virginia Veterans Cemetery (VAVCAM) Graves: 3000
Aarons Creek Cemetery (VAACCV) Graves: 38
VA Health Benefits
The Virginia Department of Veterans Services advocates for Virginia veterans and connects them to earned benefits and services. Information on current federal, state and local veterans’ programs, entitlements and referral services is available in Virginia through a network of 23 benefit service offices. All services are provided free-of-charge. Click on Find a DVS Benefits Services Office Near You.
The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) provides a broad spectrum of medical, surgical, and rehabilitative care to its customers. The goal of the Virginia Department of Veterans Services is to share information about these benefits and services to make it as easy as possible for you to receive the care you need.
If you are an OEF/OIF veteran and have NOT been contacted by the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) about your healthcare benefits, call the VA now at 1-877-222-8387 and visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs‘ health benefits site to learn more.