Friday, May 24, 2024
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Let’s Talk

My apologies if you have been eagerly await­ing another exciting and fun-filled article about lengthy federal forms or complex, internet-based benefits programs. I feel personally and profes­sionally obligated to repeat a message to spark discussion, education, and acceptance. Depres­sion, anxiety, PTSD, suicidal ideation, psycho­sis, and substance use disorder, to name a few, affect Veterans and non-veterans alike. Please join in as the barriers are broken and stigma re­moved around mental health.

The title of this article, Let’s Talk, is a nod to one of many programs offering mental health and crisis resources. I think communication and education are vital components to address­ing mental health needs in our community. The communication I am referring to may require open, two-way dialogue. We should be able to ask for help if we need it. We should also be able to ask someone if they need help.

Rest assured, this will not be the only article I pen on mental health. I am not an expert, but I will attempt to provide introductory information on available resources. As we become better ed­ucated, it will be easier to identify if someone needs assistance… and easier to ask, listen, and assist. Here are a few resources available to my Veterans and my community:

A quick programming note for an upcoming local Veterans event. The Two Harbors Ander­son-Claffy American Legion Post 109 will be hosting an open house on Wednesday, March 29th, from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War. This is a community event open to the pub­lic, all Veterans, and their family members. A free light lunch and non-alcoholic beverage will be provided for Vietnam War-era veterans and one significant other. The Post is located at 614 First Avenue, Two Harbors.

Brad Anderson is the Lake County Veterans Ser­vice Officer and can be reached at 218.834.8326, or cvso@co.lake.mn.us

Karen Christianson is the Cook County Vet­erans Service Officer and can be reached at 218.387.3639, or karen.christianson@co.cook.mn.us

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