The local nonprofit provider of elder health, hospice and advanced illness care, Capital Caring Health, received a $30K donation from EagleForce Warrior Foundation to launch the provider's 'So No One Dies Alone Program' for Veterans from Northern Virginia and nearby areas and their families. "We recognize the sacrifices made by our military and their families, and we're proud to be a part of this new program ensuring our Veteran heroes are surrounded by the compassionate presence of another human being as they near the end of life," said Cheryl Campbell, CEO, The EagleForce Warrior Foundation.
Through the Foundation's signature “Vet Jets Program” families and loved ones who do not have the financial resources to cover travel expenses to be with their Armed Forces Veteran nearing the end of life, will be provided private and commercial air travel to be at their bedside. Ground transportation expenses are included.
One of the reasons Capital Caring Health was excited about the funding according to Reverend Carolyn Richar who is a certified hospice and palliative care nurse with Capital Caring Health was because so many families during the COVID-induced economic crisis are struggling financially without jobs or they are ones with jobs but not sure how long those jobs are going to be there. "The idea of putting thousands of dollars into a trip is just frightening. It is possible now, so they don't have to worry about that," Richar said.
The program ensures Veterans the opportunity to experience an important component of the end of life. "The humanity, solace and comfort found in the presence of another human being," said Jason Parsons, Vice President of Public Affairs and Philanthropy at Capital Caring Health.
According to Altonia Garrett, Vice President, Public Affairs and Strategic Partnerships, twenty-five percent of the patient population at Capital Caring Health are Veterans. "We live in a very veteran-rich area. So, we can see a lot of those folks benefiting from their loved ones and people that need to get here to be with them," she said.
Richar said the ability to have a meaningful conversation to discuss those things that matter most to the Veteran and to their family, was important. According to Richar, so often, Vietnam Veterans struggled. They went through rough times and came back from the war, wanting to forget what they saw or what they went through. She said, "Nobody here wanted to hear about it...There's so much unsaid for these Vietnam War Vets... So much crisis and trauma in their lives once they got back. So many of them have these deep regrets...People who struggled with perhaps anger issues or addiction issues or other connection struggles. To have the chance to be together now and share whatever words they need to share. Say whatever I'm sorries, I love yous, I forgive yous, anyone needs to say... None of us are guaranteed, even the minute from now. So, use this time now, as fully and beautifully and joyfully as you can."