Recognizing National PTSD Awareness Day
By Becca Stewart
Most of us have heard of post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD. While it’s often associated with military servicemembers returning from combat, PTSD can impact anyone who experiences or witnesses a traumatic event. National PTSD Awareness Day, which takes place each June 27, aims to educate the public about the pervasiveness of PTSD worldwide.
You can help spread the word about PTSD and help survivors by donating to one of these Top-Rated Nonprofit Organizations.
What You Should Know About PTSD
Both children and adults can experience PTSD. Anyone who has witnessed or experienced trauma could potentially develop this mental health condition. Symptoms are wide-ranging but can include flashbacks, distressing memories, extreme changes in mood, depression or anxiety, and difficulty sleeping.
While PTSD is unpleasant, it is treatable. The first step is to seek help. Addressing PTSD early can keep the symptoms from getting worse. Family and friends of the person living with PTSD can educate themselves about post-traumatic stress and encourage the patient to seek and continue treatment.
National PTSD Awareness Day was created to start the conversation around trauma response. By bringing awareness to PTSD, we can encourage more people to address their mental health condition and ultimately find peace.
Heroes on the Water
While PTSD can happen in any population, at any age, it is pervasive among servicemembers who have served in combat. Heroes on the Water addresses the mental health concerns of our nation’s servicemembers by providing peaceful, serene outdoor experiences. Participants can relax while kayak fishing and enjoying the serenity of the outdoors.
Heroes on the Water has helped an estimated 50,000 servicemembers and their families pursue peace from PTSD by encouraging reconnection through outdoor activity.
“Can’t say enough about this organization and what it’s done for me personally and what I have witnessed it do to others. The compassion and dedication of the volunteers across the country that makes this organization run is just short of a miracle, and the people that benefit from this therapy appreciate it beyond belief.”
-Jason, Client Served
Trauma and Resiliency Resources, Inc.
New York, NY
TRR’s mission is to prevent servicemember suicides by addressing the underlying mental health issues impacting those who serve our country. Chief among those mental health issues is PTSD, which impacts many servicemembers who saw combat, as well as first responders across the nation.
TRR provides a multi-faceted therapeutic approach, offering trauma-informed professional counseling services, outreach to servicemembers/first responders and their families, and referrals to licensed professionals with expertise in PTSD treatment. The organization also hosts “Warrior Camp,” a week-long event focused on addressing combat-associated trauma through various proven effective methods, including group therapy and equine therapy.
“If you had told me 15 days ago that the next day I would find myself believing that things could get better, I would have laughed at you. Best case scenario is that I’d smile, nod, and in my head, ignored the rest of the conversation. What really happened, I believe, is that parts of me began to believe that healing was possible. Eva has created a one-of-a-kind program that gives you no choice but to heal in one way or another. Between the brotherhood, the support staff being combat veterans/Warrior Camp alumni, the providers being the best of the best, and those giant living breathing reflections of ourselves, something really magical takes place.”
-Redleg, Client Served
Center for Child Counseling, Inc.
Palm Beach Gardens, FL
We often hear about PTSD in adults, specifically military members and first responders. But children are perhaps the most susceptible to lifelong impacts due to traumatic experiences. Trauma early in life can physically and emotionally impact a person throughout their lives. The Center for Child Counseling recognizes how violence, abuse, and other trauma can affect a child’s development. The organization provides trauma-focused support for children and their families.
The licensed professionals at the Center for Child Counseling work with the youngest victims experiencing PTSD. Each child receives specialized, trauma-informed care designed to help the child deal with the trauma and learn new methods for overcoming trauma-associated symptoms.
In addition to trauma-sensitive counseling, the Center for Child Counseling also raises awareness about childhood trauma by educating teachers, medical professionals, legal professionals, and others.
“The organization is not only making an impact for children in Palm Beach County – they are also training others and building the capacity of our community to meet the needs of babies and young children facing adversity.”
-Professional with Expertise in the Field
Trauma Resolution Center, Inc.
Coral Gables, FL
TRC provides trauma-focused mental healthcare to a variety of survivors. Anyone experiencing PTSD symptoms can benefit from their services, including Eastern practices like mindfulness and meditation, massage, and acupuncture. Traditional counseling and group therapy sessions are also used to help survivors overcome their trauma and go on to live healthy and peaceful lives.
Each year, the TRC provides mental health services for over 15,000 patients of all ages from various backgrounds and experiences.
As we recognize National PTSD Awareness Day, it’s essential to acknowledge that trauma is, unfortunately, not uncommon. Anyone can experience PTSD, from servicemembers to medical professionals to kindergarteners. By raising awareness, we can also spread the news that there is hope for survivors. Please consider donating to one of the above organizations or discover other PTSD awareness and treatment nonprofits on our website, GreatNonprofits.org.