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Why Healing Women Healing Nations of NE Florida

Founded August 1st, 2015, Healing Women Healing Nations of NE Florida was created out of desire to meet the needs of an invisible population with a myriad of unmet needs; female veterans battling with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder  (PTSD) secondary to Military Sexual Trauma (MST).    HWHN NE Florida Executive Director, Michelle Poitier has this to say: 

Women are pivotal in the lives of many; as wives, mothers, sisters, leaders, friends, and the many other roles we maintain.  As Wives – we play a supportive role for our spouse; providing respect, love, encouragement, friendship, and partnership. As Mothers – we are nurturers and defenders; we are the first point of contact instilling in our children their moral compass.  As Sisters – we are the guiding force in the lives of our siblings. Sometimes stepping into the role of ‘mother’ as needed. As Leaders – we are innovative, visionaries, risk-takers, and trail-blazers.  As Friends – we are loyal.

However, when women are broken inside, torn-down mentally, emotionally, and sometimes physically, it can be detrimental to the family unit and the surrounding community as a whole. When we are dysfunctional then everything we do become dysfunctional, what we teach our children, what we pour into them is contaminated; causing them to become dysfunctional which leads to dysfunctional teenagers, which leads to dysfunctional adults. This can lead to dysfunction in the community and the workplace as these children transition into adulthood. The cycle is repeated from generation to generation. We have to take responsibility for some of the dysfunctionality of our children. How do we begin to break the cycle if we are not or have not addressed our own dysfunction? We can’t heal what we don’t acknowledge. Let us be the agents of change we wish to see. It is an achievable goal. We can do it. When we do that… we heal a nation…one woman at a time.  

Mitigating Factors

Point-in-Time (PIT) statistics indicate Florida has the largest population of female veterans, numbering 160,000. This distinction is significant because of the high percentage  of homeless female veterans with children. Nationally, approximately 4500 (8%) of the female veteran community are homeless on any given night (reported). Within the city of Jacksonville in Duval County approximately 1400 or more veterans and their families are homeless.

The suicide rate among female veterans is higher than the overall average veteran suicide statistics. Factors include Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Military Sexual Trauma (MST), lack of benefits & lack of knowledge of available benefits; lack of family support, and fleeing from domestic violence.

The greatest challenge is finding safe, stable, affordable housing specifically targeting female veterans with children. More than 60% of surveyed Grant Per Diem (GPD) programs that serve the homeless female veteran population do not house children, and those that do have restrictions on the age and number of children. This creates a significant barrier to accessing housing. 

See What People Are Saying

"Nationally, approximately 4500 (8%) of the female veteran community are homeless on any given night "

See What People Are Saying

"The women received what they came for during the empowerment conference - healing & restoration!"

T. Robinson

Restoration

 Healing Women Healing Nation's  NEFL provides social service referrals, workshops, support groups and resource referrals to assist women and female veterans in successfully transitioning back into the community.  Our ultimate goal is provide interim housing and life skills training so that these women veterans become empowered, independent citizens. 

See What People Are Saying

"The workshop was very moving and impactful"

R. Cole

The Solution

Healing Women Healing Nations Inc. NE Florida's   long-term goal is to provide homeless women Veterans with children safe and sustainable housing; providing eight continuum of care areas (1) Family Strengthening (2) Behavioral Health/Wellness (3) Substance abuse counseling (4)Education (5)Financial Literacy/Management Counseling (6)Legal Assistance Referral (7) Employment & Readiness Training (8) Volunteerism.  Currently we provide workshops, resource referrals, empowerment events, group counseling sessions.  By taking a three pronged approach to addressing the issues associated with the homelessness of women Veterans: Engagement, Education, Empowerment we will be instill in them that their goals are achievable with the proper support.