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March 17, 2010

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March 17, 2010

The stories written and read aloud by the "fallen warriors" in attendance the two years I participated live in my heart forever. One year Claude Anshin Thomas, retreat leader, asked that each "write about something you've never spoken before," ~ the stories were heart shattering and the sharing was healing. The participants were lighter upon leaving. I served in the kitchen, hurrying with my work in order to witness this great process.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

two different four day retreats.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Give it more funding

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the safety created for people who sorely need it. Friendships and connections established during the retreats continue beyond the four days.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Exceptional! Almost all, including staff and volunteers, shared war trauma.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Take a deep breath and follow their larger vision. This organization has deep concern for the effects of PTSD on the children of "fallen warriors."

Ways to make it better...

the organization had been able to spend more money on the location of the retreat. Accommodations were pretty rustic (i.e. mold everywhere).

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding

One thing I'd also say is that...

Despite huge obstacles, Jack and Colleen persevere. And the need just grows and grows with ever more good people returning from combat with PTSD and emotional scars.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2004

March 17, 2010

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March 17, 2010

Dear Fallen Warriors Foundation, I am happy to recommend the Fallen Warriors Foundation as a not-for-profit organization helping veterans. The Fallen Warriors Retreat I attended was a benefit to me in many ways. As a combat veteran of Vietnam era, I was highly motivated in seeking help to understand what I had experienced in combat. I can't say it was a particular therapy or the leader that gave me a sense of safety, but a sharing of experiences with other veterans and learning to listen to them, changed me. I would give Fallen Warriors Foundation a 5 of 5 stars on any chart. I would attend again. I'm impressed enough with what the Fallen Warriors Foundation has done for veterans, that we started, (Jan 2010), a version of the Fallen Warriors Retreats here in Gilpin County Colorado. So yes, what Colleen O'Callaghan and Jack Estes have put together is of value and would be a big hole for many veterans if it were not available. Sincerely, Deni Darby Gilpin County Veterans Service Officer 2960 Dory Hill Rd. Suite 100 Black Hawk, Colorado 80422 (303) 582-5444 ex 1103

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the Fallen Warriors Retreat I attended in 2007. This single retreat set in motion a series of events to bring about a not-for-profit Veteran's Resource Centre in Central City Colorado.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

That they exist, without their efforts so many lives would not have been touched.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Kind friendly, inviting and created a safe place to open up to and within.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

do a lot more for the veterans, and we need them.

Ways to make it better...

Can't say anything really, I would enjoy returning to the Fallen Warriors Retreat every year and it not cost as much. I know it is difficult to account for such a large group for 4 -5 days.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Getting funding to continue their work and efforts on so many fronts and needs.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007

March 16, 2010

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March 16, 2010

I am a disabled veteran of the Vietnam conflict and was diagnosed with PTSD in late 2000. After about a year of therapy my therapist told me of the Fallen Warriors retreat and suggested that I might find it useful. After much trepidation I attended my first of 8 or 9 retreats facilitated by Claude An Shin Thomas. The impact that these retreats have had upon me are beyond measure. The combination of quiet meditation and deep listening and thoughtful reflection help cut through the blockages that separate us from our true reality.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

greater ability to be at ease with my uneasiness.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

encourage them to make more use of volunteers and utilize a media person to spread the word to increase participation. Other Veterans that I meet have no idea this organization exists.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The camaraderie and sharing with people of similar experience, and the experience of deepening my understanding of and application of various meditation techniques as they pertain to everyday living.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

beyond reproach. All involved are unfailingly supportive and helpful.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Buy it's own damn retreat facility.

Ways to make it better...

we had a few more days.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Focus.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

March 16, 2010

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March 16, 2010

Helped in my understanding my personal PTSD problems and how to deal with these problems more effectively. I was more involved when I lived in Portland, Oregon. Now I live in So. California and am not as involved. This is a great organization, and needs others to understand its importance in the healing of war wounds among other things.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Emotional and spiritual healing as a result of my personal journey in 1995 back to Vietnam to face my personal "demons".

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The comradeship, the closeness of the bonds of the veterans associated with Jack and Colleen and their organization.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

All wonderful!!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

It could do wonderful things for our veterans of all ages. It could do marvelous things for those veterans that helped the USA, in war-ravaged countries to heal their wounds both physically and mentally.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

March 16, 2010

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March 16, 2010

I was having a lot of trouble with nightmares, outbursts of rage, the usual PTSD symptoms. I attended a Fallen Warriors retreat and the work we did, writing, meditating, talking in groups about our experiences, all were a tremendous help to me. They emphasized no particular religion, but there was a Buddhist monk there who'd been a Vietnam veteran. Being able to ask him questions, how he dealt with the really big issues (like killing people), was exceedingly helpful. I came away not cured of PTSD, but confident that I could be, and having a group of people that I could stay in contact with. Very helpful to me.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my perspective on my war experiences and coming to terms with my PTSD.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

being able to talk with others like me who have dealt with similar problems in many different ways

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

helpful, compassionate, and passionate

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach a lot of men who are self-destructing, help them heal, and get what once were incredibly brave and competent people back on their feet and contributing to the world again

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

March 15, 2010

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March 15, 2010

I've attended two meditation retreats hosted by the Fallen Warriors Foundation on Veteran's Day weekend. The retreat is led by two mendicant Zen practitioners and is intended for Veterans and their families. While at this retreat I've met amazing people who have shared their experiences with me, as I have shared mine with them. Without the Fallen Warriors Foundation, I wouldn't have had such an opportunity.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

how I manage the emotions of living in a family where a family member has undiagnosed Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

More feedback...

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach out in more multi-cultural ways to veterans from many countries.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

March 15, 2010

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March 15, 2010

I have attended more than 10 of the annual Fallen Warrior Foundation's retreats held each November in Oregon. I have found these retreats to be enormously helpful in dealing with my own PTSD issues related to my service in Vietnam with the USMC. Approximately 12 years ago I served for about 2 years as a volunteer with the Foundation's board of directors and assisted in various outreach projects to vets in the Portland metro area. In my opinion, the Foundation provides a valuable service to vets and their loved ones and is definitely worthy of the support of any organization concerned with the well being of America's veterans and their families.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

attending the November retreats at carefully chosen sites that allow 3 days of intense sharing and examination of life experiences related to war and the effects of combat on veterans and their families.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

pursue grants only from sources that are openly sympathetic to veterans and their unique problems. However, such work is tedious, frustrating and demands careful preparation of grant applications. This is very difficult for a small organization.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the personal insight that I have gained about PTSD from meeting so many other veterans and their families. The annual retreats have also been very powerful experiences that I deeply value.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

supportive and unexpectedly transparent when sharing about their own experiences with the consequences of war (on spouses, children, employers, etc).

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

very probably find the additional staff and volunteers to use the money in a responsible manner to assist vets and their families.

Ways to make it better...

there had been more volunteers to help Colleen and Jack raise funds to keep the projects solvent and apply for grants. The constant pursuit of funding was very draining and caused early burn-out of many volunteers.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

acquiring funding and volunteers to share the exhausting work load.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Colleen and Jack have sacrificed so much to keep this organization viable that it is, at times, painful to watch them. I am amazed at their dedication since military veterans are largely overlooked and forgotten by our country.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

March 13, 2010

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March 13, 2010

Having been raised in a military family and serving four years active duty it is easy to recognize people and organization that are genuinely concerned and actively involved in the affairs of our veterans. I am honored to be associated with the Fallen Warriors Foundation in the small capacity of website construction. Going through the history of the Fallen Warriors Foundation has demonstrated to me both the deep level of commitment and caring the people of the Foundation have for everyone affected by war. Which, of course, is everyone.

Photos

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

connecting with the people involved, and the people I will meet in the future though association with Fallen Warriors Foundation.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

March 13, 2010

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March 13, 2010

I had the good fortune to attend my first meditation retreat on a scholarship and was so pleased and impressed with the experience that I have attended as often as possible. Meditation is a healthy and positive response to the symptoms of PTSD. Anything I can do to avoid medication is wanted and needed. Fallen Warriors have done a great job in caring for vets with PTSD! I rate then FIVE STARS PLUS!!! THANKS, TOM NORTON

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

finding inner peace by attending meditation retreats for Veterans hosted by the Fallen Warriors Foundation and facilitated by Claude Anshin Thomas.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give them an office and paid staff.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

discovering a healthy way to escape the trauma of war.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

caring, compassionate, and competent.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Host many many more retreats at no charge to the neediest vets

Ways to make it better...

Other veterans in pain had been able to attend.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

filling the need of all of the returning vets from IRAQ and Afghanistan.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I am extremely grateful that there are people out there who care and understand exactly what I am dealing with with PTSD. I am only sorry that I did not know I had for too many years! THANKS, TOM NORTON

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

March 12, 2010

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March 12, 2010

Excellent. I attended their annual weekend retreat a few years ago which I found extremely healing by being in contact with other Veterans who also suffer from PTSD. The couple who have organized this effort are unbelievably dedicated and selfless. I believe that they should be supported in any way possible and strive to do that myself.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Oregon

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

genuine

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

help more veterans

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2007

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