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Celebrating our veterans with a music festival | Events

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Celebrating our veterans with a music festival
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Celebrating our veterans with a music festival

by Steven Masone

I have worked in the Non-Profit sector for Veterans Affairs since I came home as a Vietnam Era Veteran. We were uneducated to the realities of PTSD. PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a mental health problem that some develop after experiencing or witnessing  life-threatening events, like combat,  natural disaster, a car accident, or sexual assault.My PTSD symptoms did not manifest for almost fifteen years. I was lucky enough to get in a special training program as a facilitator after my treatment at the Menlo Park VA which is the National Center for PTSD. Working as a volunteer facilitator for Vets suffering PTSD, I began using Drama/Music Therapy to enhance what I learned from the VA. So I can attest to the therapeutic help music therapy brings to our young and old Vets that need out-of-the-box treatment. An exciting new program at the national level has a chapter here in the Sacramento area that is all about out of the box help for our veterans. GUITARS FOR VETS is a cutting edge program and charity that are making a real difference in putting hope and joy back into many lives. The veterans gather each week for a few hours of guitar lessons. The program, opened to qualified vets, gives the participants free lessons and guitars. Once a veteran is referred to the free program, he or she is given a loaner acoustic guitar to use in the sessions that they can take home to use for practice. Later they can own them for free after completion. Down Range Music Festival, a one-day event benefiting the Sacramento Chapter of Guitars For Vets, is debuting on May 19, 2018 at The Park at The Murieta Inn and Spa. The all-day event, produced by Blue Gaucho Project, will be a multi-genre event and feature a number of successful performers. This is such a great program I encourage everyone to help make this event a success and if you know any Vets who are struggling, the VA has an on-line PTSD Coach for tools to help with stress management. Remember...more Veterans have committed suicide since Vietnam than died in that war.

 https://www.ptsd.va.gov/apps/ptsdcoachonline/default.htm

Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 or chat online at www.VeteransCrisisLine.net* to receive free, confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, even if they are not registered with VA or enrolled in VA health care.

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