Forty-five residents of the VA Central Iowa Health Care System Domiciliary Program were treated to a full turkey meal by a group of fellow Veterans in “Team RWB.”
“No one should be alone during the holidays,” remarked Nick McGahan, Captain of the Des Moines Chapter of Team RWB. Team Red, White & Blue’s mission is to enrich the lives of America’s Veterans by connecting them to their community through physical and social activity.
McGahan served in the Marine Corps in the infantry.
Made up of local Veterans, this dynamic group regularly gathers to promote health and well-being activities, regularly does service projects, and creates authentic connections that many Veterans miss after leaving the service.
Having another servicemember’s back goes well beyond time served and the impact of Team RWB visiting with Veterans goes far beyond the holiday meal. Engagements like this provide a sense of normalcy, solidarity, and hope to our brothers and sisters in arms working exceedingly hard to better their lives.
The Domiciliary Care Program is one of the oldest health care programs in the VA, evolving from a “Soldier’s Home” to economically-disadvantaged Veterans to a full Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation and Treatment Program.
The Des Moines Chapter of Team RWB began supporting these Veterans this spring by providing other physical and social activity engagement activities. Staff have remarked how this group’s mission of “Veterans supporting Veterans”, makes them stand out as Domiciliary partners. We encourage other VA facilities to contact their local Team RWB chapters. It will make the world of difference to Veterans who need it the most.
By Kristi Catrenich, proud Veteran and military spouse, passionate about serving Central Iowa Veterans.
Public Affairs Officer
VA Central Iowa Health Care System