Today the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that it has partnered with CaringBridge, a global nonprofit social network, to aid in Veterans’ connection and communication with their support communities.
CaringBridge provides free, secure, personal websites — as a dedicated platform — to assist family and friends in communicating with loved ones during any type of health journey.
“Partnerships with organizations such as CaringBridge that can offer impactful support and connection form an integral part of our public health approach to ensure we reach all Veterans,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “Collaborations like these can help particularly in preventing Veteran suicide, which remains VA’s top clinical priorities.”
Through this partnership, CaringBridge highlights a tailored destination page that focuses directly on the needs of service members, Veterans and their families. Each customized website supports healing and connection in various ways, keeping families and friends informed and linked using interactive journals and providing access to resources on the site.
In addition to coordinating supportive tasks, CaringBridge has collaborated with VA medical centers and staff to offer training to help facilitate online outreach and support for Veterans and their families. The organization’s customer care staff also have been trained on VA resources and how to make referrals to the Veterans Crisis Line.
For more information on how veterans and their loved ones can use CaringBridge throughout their health journeys, visit www.caringbridge.org/military-service/.
Veterans who are in crisis or having thoughts of suicide, and those who know a Veteran in crisis, can call the Veteran & Military Crisis Line for confidential support 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, send a text message to 838255 or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.Learn about ways to support veterans in your community by visiting www.veteranscrisisline.net/BeThereSupport.aspx.
Reporters covering Veteran mental health issues can visit www.reportingonsuicide.org for important guidance on how to communicate about suicide.