This grant will support the expansion of the Veteran Spouse Network (VSN), a program of the Institute for Military and Veteran Family Wellness.
The VSN is a national network for military and veteran spouses/partners that offers peer- and transition-support programs to help veteran and active-duty spouses build stronger communities that can support their overall wellness. The VSN currently runs three different peer support programs that follow spouses from active duty to post-service life. The Veteran Family Transition (VFT) program provides military spouses, partners, and couples with individualized peer resource referral, navigation, and support, ensuring a smooth and successful military to civilian transition for the whole family. The Veteran Spouse Resiliency Group (V-SRG) program provides post-service spouses/partners with curriculum-driven peer support groups that provide them with support and guidance to promote increased self-care and improved quality of life. The Virtual Social Club (VSC) program provides online meet-ups to the larger military and veteran spouse, partner, caregiver, and family community that provide opportunities to connect, socialize, learn new skills, problem solve, and receive support. Each of the three programs in the VSN helps strengthen the network among veteran spouses and their families as they build new communities of support across Texas and beyond.
The grant will support program development, program delivery, training of peer veteran spouse leaders and project management. In addition, staff will provide ongoing online technical assistance to leaders as they lead groups and/or assist spouses with resource navigation. Staff will recruit program participants and manage relationships with partners to help
support recruitment and host groups. Program materials will be designed to be easily packaged for dissemination and implementation to expand the program over time.
Expansion of the Veteran Spouse Networks’ programing will help serve larger numbers of military and veteran spouses, leading to stronger veteran families across the state and nation. The VSN’s programs are the first of their kind to serve spouses in this way, and have become widely available through this project’s expansion to both online and in-person formats.