Opportunities For Civilian Service In The Military Community

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 51,790
    Koby Langley, the Senior Advisor to the CEO for Veterans and Military Family Initiatives at the Corporation for National and Community Service and Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and CEO of Give an Hour discuss the basics of civilian service in the military community.

    Koby Langley: Hello! My name is Koby Langley the senior advisor to the CEO for veterans and military family initiatives at the corporation for National and Community service.

    We lead the president's call to national and community service. I'm also an RAND Corp veteran and believe in a value of civic participation as do many of you.

    Many of my fellow veterans have returned home to find the adjustment to civilian life can be difficult. Often what helps in this transition is finding meaning for ways to serve here on the home front, finding the next mission.

    Many veterans help build communities on foreign soil, we fund tens of thousands of community service positions that can empower you to leave community service efforts, here at home, in AmeriCorps.

    By serving as an AmeriCorps member you can work with organizations and programs that focus on things like community development, disaster relief, improving education, caring for a national force, combating homelessness and even connecting with other veterans and military families with the benefits that they have earned through grass roots models of support like the community blueprint.

    AmeriCorps is a great option for veterans to continue to lead here at home. Over 17,000 veterans have served in AmeriCorps so far, the success so many veterans have seen serving in AmeriCorps after the military career should inspire civilians and veterans are like to engage with and serve the military community. As you'll hear there are also many other ways to work with and get back to our community.

    Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen: Hi! My name is Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen. I'm the founder and president of Give An Hour. Given an Hour has developed a national network of skilled volunteers mostly civilians, who provide behavioral health services to veterans, service members and their families at no cost. I created Give an Hour because I know that Americans want to contribute to this larger mission. They want to give of themselves to those who have sacrifices so much for our collective safety and freedom.

    Every one has something to give; I encourage you to think about leveraging your abilities, skill and talents, to honor those who have this great country. Go to the communityblueprintnetwork.

    org to find specific ways to address the most common challenges facing veterans returning service members and their families, by transforming good will into service. Find exiting volunteer opportunities by visiting the websites of local veteran service organizations such as Given an Hour, All for Good and the Mission Continue. Thank you for taking time to think about those who have given so much to us.