Transitions: Mom Call Me

While we’re so excited about moving in to the new Warrior Way Wellness Center, the transition from our offices and facilities in Providence Forge (near Williamsburg) are, at times, overwhelming.

We have fourteen new staff members ‘hired’ for various positions. As new Executive Director for Beacon Institute, Dan Klier (US Marine, Retired) arrived for work last week, November 15, 2019, at the Center to begin assuming many duties that as President and CEO, I’ve been responsible for --over twenty years.


As so, Dan’s knowledge, goals, objectives for operations and official opening of our new facility, logistics are in more than capable hands. His expertise and the military mind-set to achieve goals and objectives, logistics for telecommunications installations, equipment (including our new Gallery Book Press publishing/print equipment) computers, phones, training support, and personnel are easily transferable from missions all over the world, to those needed at Warrior Way Wellness Center. The Center will be ready for Courage to Change classes beginning on December 13, 2019.


When Mike Brown, US Navy (Reserves), arrives for duty on December 2, he’ll be the Executive Director for Veteran Pathways Home – Courage to Change programs. Teaming up with Dan for efficient and effective scheduling and management, and oversight of our peer support services and workforce development training, Mike will be the administrator and director of all peer support services logistics and delivery on and off-site.


Michael Newcomb, as Vice-President of BI:VPH all administrative duties, will continue to concentrate as the Master Trainer for our Certified Peer Support Specialists, Peer Services and Workforce Development. Michael will be providing on-site professional workforce development training at the Center, as well as off-site and out-of-state training for Veterans Services Organizations, Corporate Human Resources staff, government agencies and colleges.


The most challenging issue of this transition, with all its goals, objectives, and time considerations, is letting anyone who needs support, or an ‘Ambassador of Hope’ to assist right now. Some may get ‘lost’ in the maze of our multiple responsibilities and detours on the day to day operations until we officially open for full services (including the new Lifeline 24/7 resource call center scheduled to begin January 3, 2020).


Today’s specific message is my heartfelt apologies and concerns are noted in this Blog today. As so, I’m reaching out to a mother who called and left a message on voicemail over the weekend.( Until we open the Center, we have always been Monday-Friday operations). The call was missed until late Tuesday night when I got home from assisting with set-up the Center, and just wanted to quickly ‘check-in’.


The voicemail was from the mother of a young veteran. Stating her son has been a heroin addict since his military discharge ten years ago. Explaining reaching out to us, that two costly rehab programs were concluded, without achieving recovery for him, they are out of funds for his care, and no other known resources to assist him. The family is located near the west coast, while we are on the far side east coast. Near the end of the message, she was crying, and broken words ‘I think he has reached the end of his rope.” Please, even if you can’t help him, call me...”


As I sit this morning, writing the TCD Blog, letting all of you know, that I did try to call her. The mechanical operator informed me the number was disconnected. I’m hoping now, she’ll read this Blog and call again. I can help her and him. While we are not a rehabilitation center, there are resources and programs all across the nation that we team up and exchange referrals for services. Calls beginning January 3, 2020 will be answered by our Lifeline peer support specialists in order to serve others where they are.


For those who want to come to us for peer coaches support, Courage to Change classes for wellness & resiliency, coping skills, crisis prevention and response planning, --we’ll have doors open for all services, January 3, 2020. Including scheduled retreats or limited stays lodging arranged to meet us here in Williamsburg. Details will be posted on the www.veteranpathwayshome.org site by mid-December.


For now, ‘Mom’ if you read this message today… Please call 804-384-9325 extension 301, or email me, at Sharon.schlerf@veteranpathwayshome.org


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