Jacqulyn left the Navy a changed woman. PTSD and medical problems compounded on the struggles of taking care of her daughter with special needs as a single mom. Soon, Jacqulyn and Layla found themselves homeless, Jacqulyn skipping meals so that her daughter could eat.
In their darkest hour, Code of Support was there. When no one else would listen, Code of Support heard this veteran’s struggles and helped them navigate and access critical services by providing one-on-one support. This mom and daughter were able to escape homelessness thanks to Code of Support’s help, using their resources to acquire a reliable vehicle that would accommodate Layla’s wheelchair.
If you are reading this and thinking “no veteran should have to struggle so much,” well, you’re not alone. Code of Support co-founder Kristina Kaufmann had seen a lot in her 11 years as an Army wife, and was inspired to start this non-profit with Vietnam veteran, Major General Alan B. Salisbury, after realizing that Veterans, active military, and their families, weren’t getting the support they needed to be successful.
Nine years after its inception, Code of Support is helping thousands of military families like Jaqulyn’s. The statistics are frightening: More than a third of our 20 million veterans are struggling. More than 50,000 are homeless. 20 die by suicide every day. Code of Support tackles these issues with a holistic approach to Case Coordination. This means that the program’s Veteran or Caregiver Peer Navigators are trained to identify, prioritize and fulfill the complex and multiple needs of military and veteran families.
The target population for Case Coordination are service members, veterans, caregivers and families in immediate crisis. This is one thing that sets Code of Support apart from other organizations: they help ALL military families and individuals, regardless of location, branch of service, service era, or discharge status.
While Peer navigators work one-on-one to help solve problems, Code of Support offers another amazing resource: a huge database called PATRIOTlink. This massive compilation of resources has information you can access right from your home, covering things like financial assistance, homelessness, VA benefits assistance, mental health issues, and unemployment.
PATRIOTlink serves veterans, social workers, and anyone else who needs to access help. The database has 9,856 users, and is constantly growing. With additional technology developments, and updates based on user experience, Code of Support looks forward to expanding the platform to 20,000 users by the end of 2020.
If there’s one thing Chivers and the military have in common, it’s a sense of loyalty to their community. We say here that we are a community of misfits, but what does that really mean? It means we have each other’s backs. We experience joy, pain, excitement, a whole breadth of emotion, all together. When one of us wins, we all win.
This is what Code of Support represents. When one veteran struggles, or sleeps on the street, or goes hungry, it affects the whole community. When Major General Alan B. Salisbury (Ret.) and Kristina Kaufmann founded this organization, it was because their community was hurting, and they wanted to help.
One Veteran Peer Navigator, Phil McMilan, told us:
“We’re here to help veterans get through some of the toughest times in their lives. When you see a brother in arms struggling, you drop everything to get him back on his feet. I understand what they’re going through. I’ve been there. And I’ve become an expert in navigating veteran resources so they don’t have to."
This is why we are so thrilled to be able to grant Code of Support a $10,000 donation, funded with the help of our amazing Chive Charities donors! This $10,000 will provide funding for up to 86 Code of Support clients. $5,000 of this grant will go directly to financial counseling services, which are a vital part of the success strategy for Vets and servicemembers.
The additional $5,000 will allow Veteran and Caregiver Peer Navigators to continue the great work that they do in other aspects of veterans lives.The most common needs of clients, after budget counseling, are transportation, mortgage/rental assistance, mental health care and navigating employment.
Phil went on to say: “This Chive Charities grant allows me to continue assisting our struggling heroes when they have nowhere else to go - overcoming the struggles associated with their military service is the only way we can truly lift them from despair, and lead them to self-sustainability.
In short, this money will save veteran lives. I personally thank you, the entire Chive community, for helping us continue this essential work.”
These funds cover an accredited financial counselor that is focused on helping veterans and their families find a path to financial self-sufficiency. In short, the Chive Charities grant is absolutely essential to the increased quality of life of Code of Support’s clients and their families.
We know how it feels to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. That’s what makes places like the Chive and Chive Charities so special. If you want to extend that feeling of community to the men and women who fight for our country every day, sign the Code of Support yourself HERE.
And to play a vital part in making smiles like these possible, all you have to do is make a monthly contribution, big or small, to Chive Charities. It’s the easiest way to make a huge difference in the lives of underdogs who need it the most. Change lives right HERE!