Karen’s Story

Helping Veterans

Karen’s #GivingTuesday Story —  About the Mental Health Association in New Jersey

As a Licensed Professional Counselor, I am proud and honored to work with the student-veteran population on campus. Last spring the Mental Health Association offered training for employees and students who were not mental health professionals.   Called Mental Health First Aid, it plays a critical role in building community awareness of early signs of a mental health issue and building the confidence needed when faced with crisis.

Right now student-veterans are enrolled in higher education in record numbers.  Combat Veterans who have experienced trauma and develop PTSD, anxiety or depression have unique needs.   The transition from military life to civilian life can be overwhelming – there may be loss of identity, feelings of disorientation or isolation.   The loss of structure and a perceived lack of purpose add to the complexity.

Mental Health First Aid provided both employees and students an opportunity to improve their ability to recognize symptoms and learn how to guide someone needing help in an appropriate direction.    Reaching out with respect and compassion can make a difference to a student-veteran and contribute toward their success and easing the transition.  Universities are increasingly aware of the challenges for this population; and the training offered by the agency is a step in the right direction.


Funding for Superstorm Sandy Recovery
Efforts through Generous Grants from:
American Red Cross Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Mental Health Association in New Jersey, Inc.

Address: 673 Morris Ave., Suite 100
                        Springfield, NJ 07081

Telephone: 1.800.367.8850 Toll-Free

FAX: 973-218-0636

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