Today we’d like to announce to our friends and the military community that Happy Joe is going to shift fire towards a new objective in helping our veterans and their families. Our team believes that we can make the greatest impact by focusing our attention on cultivating mental wellness for military veterans.
Mental Wellness for Military Veterans
When I had the vision for Happy Joe back in 2012, the objective was to make a positive and lasting impact for our military veterans. What I envisioned transcended just another program; I envisioned an organization that would be holistic in changing lives. In my mind, Happy Joe would do something very few people have ever achieved as a non-profit or for-profit venture, and trying to tell this story hasn’t been without it’s challenges.
The past three weeks I’ve had endless conversations with by business partners Frank Spady and Elizabeth Crane about the real, underlying purpose of Happy Joe. What it all boils down to is that I have a passion and dream to see our veterans experience happiness and a healthy life after their military service is over. This happiness or peace can only be discovered by focusing on mental health or mental wellness first.
Suicides. PTSD. Depression. Anger. Lack of Purpose.
The biggest problems aren’t unemployment or homelessness, but mental health issues. Veteran unemployment, homelessness, and VA benefits are all important issues that must be addressed and resolved. I don’t dispute this fact. But what I realized from my own PTS type symptoms is that you need to be in the right mind before you can make the external circumstances in your life work out.
If you battle PTSD or depression or extreme anger issues, then you may be more likely to commit suicide or become homeless. You won’t be the best employee that you could be and your family life will suffer. When you struggle constantly with mental health issues you won’t be well. You can’t be a “Happy Joe” if you don’t have peace in your life.
Mental Wellness is Now Our Priority
Happy Joe started a great program by teaching veterans how to launch businesses or start careers in the web tech industry. We had a lot of interest and yielded positive results from these services. Yet this was never the main objective for our non-profit. It was a way to get started to reach a far greater need.
It has become absolutely clear in the past few weeks that Happy Joe needs to focus all of our efforts on mental wellness for military veterans. We must be diligent and aggressive in addressing the mental health issues veterans face in order to stop the 22 suicides that happen every day. It pains me personally to see so many men and women struggle with finding peace and happiness when it CAN be found. We have to shift fire.
What’s ahead for Happy Joe then?
Happy Joe is launching some brand new initiatives that will help us cultivate mental wellness among military veterans. We are going to write a separate post about each of these components but we’ll give you a brief overview.
- Wellness Workshops: We are working on launching a series of workshops in communities across the United States. These informative events will be the catalyst for reaching and connecting with veterans who want to find peace and happiness again. Happy Joe is partnering with experts in a variety of fields to ensure we can deliver the best education and advice for the military community.
- Medical Marijuana Education: Happy Joe believes that medical marijuana can have a healing effect on veterans who suffer from PTSD and other mental health issues. While cannabis use is controversial and illegal with the federal government, medical marijuana has its place. Despite some of the negative mindsets surrounding cannabis, we are going to begin offering educational workshops to help our veterans make their own choices.
- Community Groups: One of the biggest needs we’ve discovered among veterans and spouses is the need for community. Camaraderie is often lost after leaving the military service and our veterans can feel alone. Happy Joe is recruiting and investing in leaders who will launch and lead local community groups. These community groups will be a time for veterans and spouses to get together, have fun, and share their experiences. It’s all about fostering relationships and camaraderie.
Our team is really excited because now we are on the global mission we were called to do. Mental wellness and great mental health is pivotal in changing the outcome for our military veterans. We hope you support this new focus and get involved in a holistic plan that has long lasting results for our military community.
If you are a veteran who is interested in mental wellness or finding happiness, we’d love to hear from you!