Logistically, major US cities seem like the best case scenario for employment opportunities after service. Statistics show that rural areas are much better suited to meet the overall needs of Veterans in transition. Transitioning from military life back into the civilian sector is a challenging reality all Veterans face. Veterans need a new purpose and mission after taking off the uniform. Despite current elaborate efforts to install Defense Department wide transition programs that ready Veterans for this often grueling process, many Veterans are discharged from the military lacking the tools, support network, and resources needed to adequately navigate this milestone. Transition planning should start immediately after enlistment or commissioning. But that is not currently the case. The results are an alarmingly high rate of Veteran suicide, depression, divorce, homelessness, incarceration. All too often, attempts at self-medication leads to prescription drug, alcohol, and illicit substance abuse. Rural areas across America and the globe are in need of economic development and innovative child and youth enrichment activities.
What if Veterans and fearless collaborative partners worked together to put forth solutions to many up at night problems?