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Army Reserve Signs Memorandum of Understanding with Give an Hour

WASHINGTON, July 30, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Give an Hour™, a national nonprofit organization providing free and confidential mental health services to members of the military, veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, their loved ones, and their communities, announces the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) to provide mental health services for Army Reserve soldiers, families, and veterans.



Through this partnership, Give an Hour and the USAR Private Public Partnership Office (P3O) will work to increase awareness of available services and to recruit additional service providers to build the capacity of the Give an Hour network. Additionally, Give an Hour and the Army Reserve will continue to address the stigma associated with using mental health services by leading education, training, and outreach efforts in military communities.

"Partnerships with organizations that support physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual readiness provide alternative means to enable our soldiers to reach out during times of difficulty, building a more resilient force, while enabling the Army Reserve to accomplish its mission in complex environments," said Erin Thede, director of the Army Reserve Private Public Partnership. "Partnerships empower and encourage soldiers, civilians, and their family members to explore alternative methods to not only increase personal readiness and resiliency, but gain training, tools, and resources to improve their overall health."

This partnership also will provide Army Reserve leaders access to a nationwide network of individuals to establish a culture free of stigma and encourage help-seeking behavior utilizing P3 resources.

"We will work closely with our contacts in the Army Reserve to increase the awareness of and access to our services," says Barbara Van Dahlen, Ph.D., founder and president of Give an Hour. "In addition to direct counseling services, we will work with the Army Reserve to provide training and education on the psychological and emotional issues affecting soldiers and their families. We've found that working with strategic partners is critical in ensuring the successful reintegration of military families back into their communities," Van Dahlen adds.

Give an Hour providers are psychiatrists, substance abuse counselors, psychologists, pastoral counselors, social workers, marriage and family therapists, psychiatric nurses, and licensed mental health counselors. They are available throughout the nation to provide free counseling to active duty, National Guard and Army Reserve members, post-9/11 veterans, and those who have separated or retired from military service. Give an Hour also offers free services to parents, siblings, unmarried partners, and grandparents—in short, anyone affected by a loved one's military service.

By providing services that are confidential and separate from military resources, Give an Hour offers essential support for men and women who might otherwise fail to seek or receive appropriate help. There are no limits on the number of sessions a person may receive and no paperwork or insurance claims to be filed. Mental health professionals interested in joining Give an Hour can complete an easy online application form at www.giveanhour.org, and a Give an Hour representative will follow up with further details on the registration and orientation process. People in need of services may also visit this website and use the provider search tab to locate a mental health professional in their area.

About Give an Hour

Give an Hour a nonprofit 501(c)(3) providing free mental health services to military members, veterans, and their families, was founded in September 2005 by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, a psychologist in the Washington, D.C., area. Give an Hour has been instrumental in the development of the community-based approach to addressing the challenges that face our nation's military community, having created a successful model for harnessing skill-based volunteers eager to offer their services. Thus far, the network of nearly 7,000 licensed mental health professionals has provided more than 163,000 hours of care and support to those in need. Give an Hour is now leading the Campaign to Change Direction, a collective impact effort to change the culture of mental health in America. Give an Hour and its partners are addressing common barriers to understanding mental health and raising awareness about the signs of emotional suffering. To learn more, visit www.giveanhour.org or connected.giveanhour.org. To learn more about the Campaign to Change Direction, visit www.changedirection.org.

About U.S. Army Reserve Private Public Partnership

The U.S. Army Reserve Private Public Partnership (P3) develops for-profit, not-for-profit, and academic partnerships to enhance the overall readiness of Army Reserve soldiers, civilians, and families to build a more resilient force. These partnerships enhance individual readiness by pairing civilian capabilities with Army Reserve capabilities to advance the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, financial, employment and family readiness of soldiers, civilians, and family members. To learn more, visit http://www.usar.army.mil/resources/Pages/Employer-Partnership-opportunities-and-Information.aspx or contact CPT Olivia Cobiskey at olivia.cobiskey-haftmann.mil@mail.mi

Photo: (L-R) Nancy St. Claire, chief operating officer, Give an Hour; Erin Timmermans, program specialist, Give an Hour; Robert "Bud" McFarlane, member of board of directors, Give an Hour; LTG Jeffrey W. Talley, Chief of Army Reserve, Commanding General USARC; Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and president, Give an Hour.

A photo accompanying this release is available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=34813

CONTACT: Lauren Itzkowitz, Give an Hour litzkowitz@giveanhour.org (240) 533-1669Source: Give An Hour (EST)