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December Inspire! explores veterans issues

• Dec 8, 2017 at 1:00 PM

Life after the military can pose many challenges to veterans and family members. Their return to civilian life can be consumed with issues ranging from re-establishing relationships with family and friends, finding a new career path, pursuing an education, or locating a new home.

Veterans issues will be the topic for the Extended Grace Inspire! meeting on Saturday, Dec. 16. The community is invited to attend this collaborative event, which takes place at the Momentum Center for Social Engagement, 714 Columbus Ave. in Grand Haven, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The discussion will address how to meet the unique needs of veterans and what services are available to them. The meeting will include small group discussions, large group brainstorming, and panelist presentations with questions and answers. Brunch will be provided by the Cumin and Rendezvous restaurants.

This month’s Dinner and Movie at the Momentum Center directly correlates with the Inspire! topic of veterans issues. Extended Grace invites the community to enjoy dinner and a movie on Friday, Dec. 22, while continuing to raise awareness on the needs of veterans. The R-rated film, “Project 22,” references that in the United States alone, 22 veterans commit suicide each day.

The movie follows two combat-wounded veterans who ride motorcycles across the country, speaking to veterans about post-war challenges that lead to suicide. On their journey, the two veterans interview researchers and mental health professionals who specialize in post-traumatic stress disorder and brain injuries. They begin to learn about new therapies and open up about their own struggles.

Mike Baauw, from the Muskegon County Department of Veterans Affairs and a collaborator in this event, encourages viewing the film.

“’Project 22’ is a raw and honest documentary that sheds some light on the struggles combat veterans face by following a group of veterans from a state of hopelessness to a state of purpose,” he said. “I recommend this film to anyone who interacts with combat veterans.”

Pizza provided by Marco’s Pizza will be served at 6 p.m. A dish to share is welcome but not required. The movie will be shown at 7 p.m.

Both events are free and registration is not required.

Extended Grace is a grass-roots social lab dedicated to building community while solving problems. For additional information, visit extendedgrace.org or send an e-mail to barbara@extendedgrace.org.

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