As Vietnam veteran attending Vet's Journey Home 20 years ago, I was initially guarded, but by the end I felt welcome, safe and finally home. It was the first time since I left the service that I slept without nightmares. It was the beginning of a new life for me without PTS.
Now I volunteer to staff these retreats to give back the love, acceptance, understanding, and support that I received. Every time I staff I heal even more, even as I help heal other veterans.
This program saves lives and families. I am living proof.
- Mitch Tyler
Supporting veterans to recover themselves from the wounds of war provided me great satisfaction. This is a real way to pay back our service men and women for all they have given. The program helped me understand the real price we as a community pay for war and gives me hope for the future. I am proud and honored to have worked with the dedicated and skillful group of volunteers who are the backbone of this program.
This was a life changing weekend for me. It gave me the opportunity to get my self grounded and retake my Journey Home. I liked it so much that I became a Board member, with the intention of helping at a deeper level. As I learn more about the organization, I can't help but to respect and love it even more. This is truly an organization that goes about and behind the expectations formed by Veterans, and for the Veterans. We get to witness miracles every weekend we have.
I am a MST (Military Sexual Trauma) Survivor, Complex PTSD and am a survivor of multiple Life Involved Traumas. I have been on a 30 year Suicide mission; until I met my therapist and went to one of the Retreats, which was hosted by Veterans Journey Home. My therapist and the VA had been trying to get me to agree to group counseling; and until I had experienced the program and processes presented by this Organization I had not a clue of what to expect.
During my weekend, in the retreat (which by the way was completely free of financial cost, or expectation of payment of any sort) my only expense was my time and emotional commitment to the process; which did not come easy. However, during the weekend I crossed so many "Milestones," that I could not even begin to describe.
For years I had not been able to sleep on an elevated surface (bed), or in a room with other people; with the events of the first night and the care, love, compassion, and support of the staff and Instructors, I was able to settle in and found the first night of uninterrupted and uneventful rest/sleep; that I have not had since childhood.
The efforts of everyone and care I received in that retreat in February at the Big Bear, Ca. site, was so attentive and full of support that myself and others who participated in that retreat, formed a bond between all of the participants, staff members and Instructors that I would have never thought was possible between myself and anyone else.
I had no idea of what to expect while I was Enroute to the retreat site. Talking to the person who picked me up, I was told that he was not even going to discuss what the retreat was about or what goes on at the retreat. He explained that it is different for everyone and that everyone gets something unique and different from the experience.
He could not have been more on target with his description; and I will forever be in his debt for his honesty.
When I returned from my weekend with Vet's Journey Home, Everyone around me not iced a huge difference in me; including my therapist was not a VA Provider. She mentioned several times that her job had been made somewhat easier, with the milestones and barriers that the retreat helped me get through.
Since February 2015, The results of my time at the retreat had somewhat came to be recognized not only by people around me, but also by myself. The retreat and the efforts of my Therapist in conjunction with the retreat has unlocked so many facets of my life, and my life has become more fulfilled and manageable that I don't believe that this site would have enough band-width to support the documentation, or recounting of.
All I know is that giving credit to my therapist, I must also give credit to Veterans Journey Home, it's staff, it's Instructors, and it' s processes have literally saved my life. Prior to seeking out and accepting this Organizations assistance, I was begging on a daily basis to stop living. Now, I am finding times that I am celebrating life again. (something else I have not experienced since childhood.)
Thanks Vet's Journey Home!
I went to the VJH weekend not knowing what to expect, hoping to deal with issues of anger and resentment. But finding out the my grief over losing my twenty-one year old son from an overdose of drugs was causing me more problems than I knew. Good and caring people helped bring me through some of the hardest parts of acceptance in this area.
One of the most amazing things was walking into the registration area and finding out that my room-mate for the weekend was also a Shipmate from my Navy days who I had not seen in 32 years! It was more than a coincidence, it was unbelievable. We were not just shipmates we were good friends too! So the re-connection was instant and although it brought back a ton of memories most of them were great and there was a good deal of healing on the weekend. I learned a number of things about my grief, I learned how to look at my relationship with my son in a different light. Just because he wasn't here in the physical sense didn't mean he didn't exist to me anymore. He lives on in my memories and in my heart forever. The staff was caring, competent and really interested in helping. I was asked to go into the weekend with an open mind, that's what I did. I didn't judge what may happen I just tried to allow it and see where it took me. I shared this all in excitement with my wife when I got home, and took it slow in explaining how to connect with our son in a different way. It was a great lesson that I am grateful for and I would love to experience this again to deal with other boulders or blocks that may hamper me from living my life to the fullest. Thank You Vets Journey Home. I appreciate what you do! - JD
I have been involved with Vets Journey Home for over 4 years. The program has given me my mission in life, "Helping Our Veterans" . This program helps our veterans deal with PTSD, TBI and the silent scars that happen to our veterans when they serve our great country. I highly recommend this program to ALL VETERANS WHO HAVE SERVED OUR COUNTRY !
Working with "Vets Journey Home" and the participants has been so rewarding. We allow vets a safe, confidential and non-judgemental opportunity to tell their story and get a release from the guilt, shame, and anger that they have harbored for many years. The difference from their first night to graduation is nothing short of amazing. I give it a 5 star rating. 10 stars would be More appropriate.
This program has helped me a lot with my post deployment issues and post military life. I cannot stress how much this has helped me. So much so, that I have stepped up to be on staff to help other veterans.
Beginning my journey in 2009, with previous VJH Staff, life was still hard. I began to notice change since I went back 2013...with the new and improved VJH STAFF! In less than 2 yrs I have began to live more outside my GI box. Learned to accept and give love to ALL mankind! I have been given such great roll models,GIFTS n knowledge....My family is starting to learn to talk, developed more loving ways to communicate, and accept n love each other in all our differences. HUGE LEAP recently in progress! Thanks to universe n WI -VJH
Vets Journey Home is a super organization! At no charge to veterans, they provide a 3 day intensive therapy to get us back on the road to wholeness. It is life changing and I know of no other opportunity like it.