WASHINGTON, D.C. – COVID-19 has brought a wave of new challenges to most communities, including members of the military and veterans. To address these new stressors, the American Red Cross is offering a solution by launching an online, interactive workshop to help the military community manage pandemic-related stress and learn healthy coping methods.
Although the military community is accustomed to handling constant change and uncertainty, COVID-19 is adding a host of different stressors. They are finding themselves in situations where families may have delayed reunions, uncertain deployment schedules, veterans are having to seek out broader support systems, difficulty accessing community resources, and many other unique issues.
“The Red Cross has always been there for the military community, but now we are focusing on more accessible skills-building and behavioral health outlets for this community because we know that people are nervous and their access to resources has changed due to COVID-19”, said Melissa Porrey, a Red Cross mental health senior associate and licensed professional counselor. “By using a virtual model, people all over the world can log in and connect in real time with a small group of people facing similar concerns.”
Two mental health facilitators will run each virtual workshop, which is about 60-90 minutes in length and will have no more than 12 participants. All service members, veterans and their family members are welcome and encouraged to attend the sessions.
To try and recreate an in-person environment, each participant will be encouraged to join the discussion and share their experiences. Workshop topics will include:
- Managing the stress of isolation, multitasking, working from home, supporting children, managing health, caring for family members and career interruptions
- Defining stress and recognizing its impact
- Healthy communication during highly stressful times
- Learning relaxation exercises
- Setting goals for building wellness plans
- Getting healthy sleep
- Finding a positive perspective
To sign up for a virtual workshop or learn more, call your local Red Cross chapter or contact them by visiting redcross.org and type in your zip code.
The American Red Cross was founded on the mission of service to the armed forces with Clara Barton tending to injured soldiers during the Civil War. Honoring Clara Barton’s legacy, the Red Cross proudly supports our nation’s military and veteran communities of all eras in many areas. To learn more about the scope of support offered please visit, redcross.org/saf or download the Red Cross Hero Care App, available in your smartphone app store.