Give an Hour Provides Free Mental Health Services to Military Members
GAH was founded to address the significant mental health concerns facing returning troops, their families, & their communities. GAH created a national volunteer network of mental health professionals providing quality care by giving 1 hour a week in service to military personnel & their loved ones.
Give an Hour, a national nonprofit providing free mental health services to military members has grown exponentially—by nearly 2,000%—from roughly 300 to 6,300 providers since GAH began providing services in July 2007.
Founded in 2005 by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, GAH has received national recognition as a thought leader & mobilizer of civilian constituencies serving military communities. Between Jan 2011-May 2012, the network increased by 23%, the # of hours donated increased 43%, and GAH was named 1 of 5 winners in the White House’s Joining Forces Initiative. In April, Dr. Van Dahlen was named to the TIME 100 list of the Most Influential People in the World.
Although providers take quarterly surveys and report having donated over $5.3 million in services, the # is presumably significantly higher, given response rates of 25%. Providers report caring for military members & family members at equal rates, a breakdown that matches studies on the ripple effects of wartime experience. GAH intentionally does not keep records of those who seek services, but regularly hears directly from those who have been helped.
Justin Constantine, a Marine veteran who suffered severe physical injuries during combat, turned to GAH when he was unable to get counseling through the VA outside regular business hours, which conflicted with his full-time job & physical therapy.
Jennifer Crane, says “the generosity of the individuals involved with GAH has given me the faith in society that I so desperately needed. My life will never be ‘perfect’ but with the help GAH has provided me, I can begin to truly live again.”
Recognizing that mental health concerns do not exist in a vacuum, & that collaboration between organizations will significantly improve the care provided for returning troops and their families, Dr. Van Dahlen has worked with colleagues to create the Community Blueprint Network: a tool & approach to help communities nationwide assess & coordinate existing programs and services to create an integrated network of care for military families. GAH has been implementing this approach in VA & N.C. GAH was selected as an activation partner for the health element of Got Your 6. This unprecedented multidimensional awareness campaign brings together the entertainment industry and top-tier national nonprofits to change the conversation & show veterans & military families as civic assets & leaders.
In coordination with Got Your 6, GAH & its partners will lead a program to educate 100,000 graduate students in mental health disciplines on the unique issues of veterans & military families by June 2014. In May GAH hosted an inaugural gala, bringing together supporters, providers, & clients for a celebration of service – raising $213,000. GAH also launched a new interactive website, connected.giveanhour.org, to provide a forum for discussion and activism on these issues.
More About This Charity
Health and Well Being
Give An Hour
To develop national networks of volunteers capable of responding to acute and chronic conditions that arise within our society. Our first target population is the U.S. troops and families affected by the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and other post-9/11 conflicts. GAH asks mental health professionals nationwide to donate an hour of their time each week to provide free mental health services to military personnel and their families.
- This Achievement has raised $3,330,000.
- This Charity has helped 3,000 people in the past year.
- This Charity increased it’s number of providers on their network by nearly 23% from 5,140 to 6,300
- This Charity donated 53,000 hours to their cause – a nearly 43% increase