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We Honor Veterans Program Development

My specialist year internship (field placement) began in Summer 2021. I transitioned from working in residential addiction treatment in 2020-2021 to working in hospice/palliate care and veteran care with a macro angle. I have been looking at regions in five states covered by my agency to see what resources are there, what relationships are there, and where there are gaps. This semester and next semester are focused more on bringing information together (while still doing a LOT of listening and learning) to work alongside the hospice and veteran communities to build empowering outreach, relationship-building, and education activities. Women veterans and Vietnam veterans are two populations we plan to center. If you are a veteran or veteran’s caregiver in Louisiana or Mississippi – particularly a woman veteran or Vietnam veteran – and you have found a need for specific resources, have ideas about outreach you would find beneficial, would like to contribute to educational activities to help hospice staff and volunteers better care for veterans, or would be interested in serving other veterans as a hospice volunteer, contact me at joi.chadwick@case.edu. I can listen and incorporate your feedback in program development and/or connect you to a program champion or manager of volunteer services.

As part of the course Assessing and Engaging Community for Change, I am in an assessment group with two peers. We are doing a bit of a remix/sequel to a project two of us worked on last semester in another group where we developed an organizing campaign to supplement the ACLU of Ohio’s Smart Justice campaign to end Ohio’s dependence on cash bail. That group consulted with Greer Aeschbury, Deputy Organizing Director for the ACLU of Ohio to get an understanding of their campaign at the time, strategy, and power analysis. We were pleased to provide some products that the organization might be able to use to further the campaign and make more steps toward justice. The current semester’s project is a community assessment (so, not a campaign plan) in its infancy and we are still solidifying our focus, geographic context, and research questions. However, we know our data collection will involve a virtual focus group of 8-12 participants, stakeholder and/or oral history interviews, and existing quantitative data. As with the previous project we hope to build relationships and produce fruits that will be of use in moving toward liberation for disabled people and those impacted by the criminal legal system.

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