As health promoters working with military veterans, the best way to check on whether we’re meeting muster is program evaluation. Some of our newly-published research on programs conducted in partnership with TeamRWB is out in the latest issue of the Californian Journal of Health Promotion. We’ve run some really exciting wellness programs for veterans – check a few of them out on video!

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Background and Purpose: Military and veteran suicide rates exceed those found in the general population. Veterans often reject patient identities, creating barriers to care for mental health within the clinical sector and a mandate for prevention programs. The purpose of this study was to offer a post-intervention process evaluation of one peer-led resilience program offered to military veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan at three sites in 2013. Methods: Secondary analysis of survey data collected involved mixed-methods analysis of open and closed-ended questions. In total, the research team reviewed 52 electronic survey responses; participant response rate was 48.1%. Results: Descriptive data analysis found that all participants rated Just Roll With It Bootcamp content as“somewhat useful” (17.9%) or “very useful” (82.1%). Qualitative analysis of open-ended questions found that content was perceived as valuable by participants. Emergent themes included: health practices, social support, and participant quality of life or satisfaction. Comments also informed four sub-themes which included: meditation/mindfulness, nutrition, physical practice, and the seminars’ physical environment. Conclusion: Culturally-informed prevention programs that emphasize social support, physical movement, and peer-leadership have a vital role to play in working to prevent suicide by promoting quality of life for veterans.

Read the full article here.