By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Clay M. Whaley,Naval Medical Center San Diego Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO - Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD) collaborated with the United Service Organizations to establish the Single Wounded Warriors Retreat program Oct. 21.
The Single Wounded Warrior Retreat program is for NMCSD's wounded, ill or injured (WII) service members, and provides a way for eligible single men and women to cultivate, nurture, and grow positive personal relationship skills.
The program was created because of the success of NMCSD's Married Wounded Warrior Retreat, and single wounded, ill, or injured members deserve the same opportunity to take part in a retreat, according to Irina V. Rader, Soldier and Family Assistance Center Education Services Specialist at NMCSD.
"It's important for them [WII single service members] to attend the retreat in order to become acquainted with, acquire, and learn positive relationship building skills so that they will not fall prey or become unwitting victims to jerks or jerkettes," said NMCSD Chaplain Walter Leverette, Comprehensive Combat and Complex Casualty Care Pastoral Care Counselor. "Once they are acquainted the necessary skills to navigate the social scene, it will become a lot less intimidating and stressful for them as they socialize in person or over the internet," he added.
To accomplish the program's goals, participants are provided with interactive educational presentations, a variety of fun filled activities such as Family Feud, Wheel of Fortune and Hollywood Squares.
"These games serve to enhance fun, relationship building, interactive participation and to find out how much of the presentation has been set into memory and life style," said Leverette.
During the first Single Wounded Warrior Retreat meeting more than 25 participants took part in an educational Relationship Attachment Model, Jeopardy, dinner cooked by San Diego Chef Dave Krohn, a raffle and ended the night with a trip to a San Diego comedy club. The Relationship Attachment Model provided participants with educational skills and tips on "How to Avoid Marrying a Jerk/ette."
"It's a great opportunity to get single service members together and allow them to have the opportunity to meet other single service members, and provide them with the opportunity to learn new skills," said Carrie Holley-McCormack, NMCSD Army Warrior Transition Unit licensed clinical social worker.
To make the event a success more than 30 volunteers from multiple organizations assisted at the retreat and the numbers are expected to increase. A variety of upcoming events are scheduled to take place every two months for the program participants.
For more information on NMCSD visit: http://www.med.navy.mil/sites/nmcsd/Pages/default.aspx