said 1 year, 1 month ago:
@trudy I commend you for wanting to help both groups of women. As an Air Force vet who has spent a lot of time visiting the VA and talking with thousands of veterans, I can tell you only a very few women veterans even know they are entitled to free yearly female medical exams, paps smears, and mammograms. I know I didn’t until a male veteran I met online told me about six years ago. Since then, the VA has provided thousands of dollars of medical care to me and I am deeply thankful for having discovered this “accidentally.”
I tell you this because few women vets ever hook up to even know about all the free services offered to them. Also, if you spend any time at your local VAs, you’ll see few women there at all. So even finding each other to share info is a problem.
Veterans programs are not just heavily geared toward male veteran’s needs, they’re almost completely geared towards men’s needs. So whatever small thing you can do to help women veterans, I applaud and encourage you. I also encourage you to try to co-sponsor your training with a female veteran. Last year, I met repeatedly with a group of women vets who shared their frustrations about not being heard or understood by non-vets, female VA personnel who didn’t understand military culture and experiences, and male-dominated VA personnel.
I can tell you that was the first time I ever had that conversation with anyone because only female vets would understand. We always appreciate any morsel of help or information that’s provided to women vets; we openly run toward it when that info is provided by women vets and shy away when it’s not. So I recommend you try to recruit at least one female vet to at least co-sponsor this with you.
Just my thoughts…