Clarksville, TN – Research shows that an alarming number of military and veteran caregivers are suffering debilitating metal, physical, and emotional effects as a result of their caregiving duties.
In an effort to battle the problem in the home of Fort Campbell, the City Council unanimously approved a resolution September 1st expressing support for “Hidden Heroes: The National Coalition for Military Caregivers.”The coalition was formed in 2014 by the Elizabeth Dole Foundation in response to the findings in a nationwide study of military caregivers conducted by the RAND Corporation.
The report shows that 5.5 million family members care for wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans.
These caregivers are the single-most important factor in the recovery and well-being of wounded warriors, according to the study, commissioned by the foundation with the support of Wounded Warrior Project.
Unfortunately, the toll taken by serving in such an all-consuming role results in physical and psychological stress, a decrease in workforce participation and lost productivity. The costs to the family and to society are high and need to be mitigated.
In approving the resolution, the city joins a growing list organizations that have pledged as members of the National Coalition for Military Caregivers to raise awareness and implement new programs of support for the spouses, parents, sons, daughters, other loved ones and friends who care for wounded service members.
The council’s resolution states the City of Clarksville will:
- Become a military and veteran caregiver supportive city.
- Seek to identify military and veteran caregivers residing in the city.
- Work to ensure that governments, organizations and employers are aware of the unique challenges of military and veteran caregivers, and work to create supportive environments and opportunities for them.
- Take steps each May, during Military Appreciation Month, to honor and recognize the city’s military and veteran caregivers in partnership with the national Hidden Heroes cam
The city’s points of contact for citizens and organizations wanting to offer support, and caregivers who need that support, are Bill Harpel, city Military Liaison, at 931.648.6145; and Charley Gentry, city Chief of Staff, at 931.648.6273.