Mission 22 sets out to help veterans

Mission 22 Region Leader Chris Cooper has been leading Mission 22 in South Dakota for five years. Mission 22 raises awareness for veteran suicide, post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries by letting veterans know that they’re not alone.

“We help them with resources on how to get help and raise money so we can get them through the programs that help them the most,” said Chris. “It’s close to home to me. I’ve lost many friends to suicide.”

Mission22Chris is in charge of everything that goes on in Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming.

“It’s a pretty big region,” he said. “We have one of the highest veteran populations in the country per capita. Unfortunately, we also have one of the higher suicide rates per capita in the country, mainly because a lot of the veterans don’t know of all the resources that are out there. They know about the VA, but that’s about it for many of them.”

Chris also says that it’s difficult getting the word out there and letting smaller towns know what Mission 22 is. He says their goal is to do events and hopefully get people to talk about it and get the word out to the smaller towns.

Mission 22 has a year-long program called Recovery and Resiliency that helps veterans get supplements, a gym membership, a health coach and different books that help them go along the way of their recovery.

“And many other tools that they can use that help them kind of calm themselves or re-energize themselves, refocus themselves when they’re having the hard days. Gym memberships like jujitsu, CrossFit, things like that,” Chris said.

Chris said there are many ways people can show their support for the veterans in the community.

“It can be just as easy as going to them saying, ‘Hey, how are you doing? Thank you for your sacrifices.'”

In addition to Mission 22, Sacred Mountain, Sergeant Colton Levi Derr Foundation and CVMA do events for veterans to help them out.

“You know, looking to finding those events and those different organizations have events going on and supporting them is a big way of showing their support and just letting them know that they’re here for them,” Chris said.

For more information, visit the Mission 22 website here.

Categories: Connect With Us – Segments, ConnectCenter1-Military