The holidays can be especially hard when we’re suffering with feelings of loneliness. But whether it’s because friends and loved ones are too far away—or have passed away—or because we’re constantly being reminded during the holidays that we’re alone, there are helpful resources out there. Let’s look at a few this week that aim to help veterans.
Elk’s Lodge Adopt a Veteran
The Elk’s Lodge runs an adopt a veteran program that seeks to ease loneliness in veterans at VA homes, hospitals and care centers. You can adopt more than one veteran through the program, and lodges have even been known to adopt a whole wing or floor at a hospital or care center. Click here for more information on the program. Or click here to find an Elk’s Lodge in your part of Texas.
Red Cross Holiday for Heroes
The American Red Cross hosts a variety of activities for veterans during the holidays through its Holidays for Heroes program. Click here for more information on the program. Or click here to find a Texas Red Cross near you.
AMVETS has a long history of brightening the lives of America’s heroes. Along with several other efforts, the organization runs a program that sends volunteers to spend quality time with hospitalized veterans. Click here to read more about AMVETS Texas. Or give them a call at (214) 309-1980.
Texas VFW organizes a wide variety of different activities and events aimed at keeping veterans engaged, especially during the holidays. They offer services for veterans and provide many opportunities to connect with and become a part of the community. Click here to find a VFW post near you.
USO Holidays for Heroes
Like the Red Cross, the USO also runs a Holidays for Heroes program, though it focuses on bringing “holiday cheer and a touch of home” to service member on deployment. Click here to find out how you can contribute.
Located in Houston, Combined Arms acts as a sort of one-stop shop for veteran resources, helping to connect veterans with the services they need. Currently, Combined Arms lists 67 mental health resources available, plus more than a dozen mental health training classes and workshops. Click here to find out more about the services this organization offers.
Veterans Crisis Line
If you’re experiencing feelings of depression and have no one else to talk to, please take steps to stay connected. The Veterans Crisis Line connects veterans in need with qualified representatives with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Veterans can call (800) 273-8255, text 838255 or chat online by clicking here. Services are available 24/7, 365 days a year.
For veterans, experts say, loneliness is one of the biggest factors leading to high levels of depression and suicide. To stay well, it’s vital to feel connected. And if you’re feeling lonely, all of us here at Veteran Energy urge you to reach out. You’re not alone.