There is a definite lack of knowledge about moral injury within the veteran, mental health, and clergy communities. Many chaplains have no idea how much women veterans are truly suffering and how little support they receive. Moral injury is often thought of as something that only happens to combat soldiers when they kill someone.
Communities can play a pivotal role in helping veterans. “Community pastors rather than health care providers may be the first point of contact for a family struggling with the return of a loved one… Service members are trained to be stoic, self-reliant individuals who focus on the well-being of their unit, but chaplains can promote a comfort level for seeking help or sharing hardships,” stated Dr. Richard Powers (in Caring for the Human Spirit, Spring/Summer 2015). However, if a pastor has never served, he or she may not know how to “speak the veteran language”.
Women veterans are widely spread throughout the U.S. and often have a low level of financial and transportation resources.
The conferences will bring together women veterans, researchers, mental health professionals, and chaplains to learn about new assessments, treatments, and resources for military-related injuries, including moral injury, and address regional lay leaders in how to assist them in transitioning well into their civilian communities.
The committee is made up of a diverse group of veterans, support professionals, and chaplains:
- Mary Ellen Salzano
- Alicia Marie (Diesch) Lopez
- Jackie Berry
- Darcy Pavich
- Billiekai Boughton
- Louise Sutherland-Hoyt
- Angela Caruso-Yahne
- Lindsey Moser
- Dr. Christiane O’Hara
- BriGette McCoy
Communications Assistant and Military Liaison
- Avalon Taylor
WVSJ is an outreach and community based non-profit working to bring together national and local resources available to women veterans in a single, easy to understand and navigable resource. The online social network organization started with peer support groups that utilized social media and education, to inform, support and advocates on behalf of women veterans. It focuses on issues of Military Sexual Trauma (MST), Moral Injury, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), homelessness, suicide awareness and prevention, and VA and community based services and benefits available to women veterans and their families.
WVSJ continues their primary mission of providing information, education, encouragement, and support to women veterans, regardless of the era in which they served, as well as support tools and resources to the veteran’s families and the community at large. It supports and partners with others in the academic, military, faith, and other communities in joint programs of benefit to women veterans.
Moral Injury Support Network for Servicewomen, Inc. (MISNS, pronounced “missions”) specializes in education, research, and advocacy in military chaplaincy and soldier care. MISNS’ research focus is on pastoral support to female service members. Women are an underserved population when it comes to spiritual leadership and support. By conducting studies with female service members as the primary population, MISNS is able to develop theories and practices that will enhance the lives of women in the military.
As an educational and training organization, Moral Injury Support Network for Servicewomen, Inc. helps men and women in the chaplaincy hone their skills as religious professionals and care providers. MISNS also works with seminaries, religious groups, and professional chaplain organizations to provide content for continuing education and professional growth. MISNS’ training inventory includes seminars, case studies, keynote speeches, class curriculum, and other products.
Leashes of Valor is a national non-profit working to provide every post 9/11 veteran who needs one with a highly-trained service dog to assist them in mitigating the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
Dr. Daniel Roberts is the President and CEO of Moral Injury Support Network for Servicewomen, Inc.. Daniel is an author and consultant who conducts world-class, women-centered education, research, and advocacy in spiritual leadership and spiritual support. Daniel has over 15 years of experience in providing emotional and spiritual support to men and women in the armed forces. He also provides training and mentorship to thousands of military chaplains through conferences, classroom instruction, and one-on-one coaching. His students include chaplains from the U.S. Army, Air Force, and Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). Daniel also helped the CAF develop military doctrine for the deployment of chaplains as religious advisers.
Dr. Roberts created the Comprehensive Female Soldier Support Model, a framework of spiritual care for women service members. His current research includes women-centered theory development on spiritual leadership and moral injury. Daniel is also an expert on world religions.
Dr. Roberts’ recent publications include Combating Religiously Influenced Racism in Organizations (SAGE Business Cases), Modifying the Qualitative Delphi Technique to Develop the Female Soldier Support Model (The Qualitative Report), Women and Leadership: Using the Delphi Technique to Effect Organizational Change (SAGE Business Cases), and The Comprehensive Female Soldier Support Model: A Delphi Study (Journal of Health Care Chaplaincy).
Dr. Roberts holds a doctorate of management in organizational leadership with a specialization in information systems technology from the University of Phoenix, a M.S. in information systems from Strayer University, and a B.A. in management and ethics from John Wesley College. He is a member of the Spiritual Care Association and the Military Chaplains Association.
To find out more, contact Dr. Daniel Roberts, firstname.lastname@example.org or 910-690-5964. References are available upon request.