U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Launches Recovering Warrior and Caregiver Employment Program
Hiring Our Heroes Creates Standalone Events and Online Resources to Address Employment Needs of Wounded, Ill, and Injured Veterans & Military Caregivers
BOSTON, MA—At the Boston Recovering Warrior Employment Conference today, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation announced the creation of the Recovering Warrior and Caregiver Program (RWCP), an expansion of the Chamber’s Hiring Our Heroes program.
Recognizing the distinct employment challenges that face our nation’s recovering warriors and the men and women who care for them, the RWCP will offer career-based events and tools designed exclusively for these populations. The program is chaired by Lt. Col. Justin Constantine (USMC, Ret.), a Purple Heart recipient wounded by a sniper attack in 2006; sponsored by La Quinta Inns & Suites and PeopleScout; and supported by the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, Wounded Warrior Project, and Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA).
“Hiring Our Heroes has always made an effort to reach our nation’s recovering warriors and military caregivers,” said Eric Eversole, vice president at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and executive director of Hiring Our Heroes. “Over time, however, as our relationships with the Dole Foundation, Wounded Warrior Project, and PVA grew, we knew that even more needed to be done and could be done—together. Our team has developed a strategic plan for the RWCP’s first year, and we made a great start of it today in Boston.”
The term “Recovering Warrior” was purposefully chosen to encompass veterans with every type of physical, psychological, or behavioral challenge. Employment plays a critical role in the rehabilitation and reintegration of these dedicated men and women. A job not only allows them to put their military skills and experience to work, but also encourages a balanced lifestyle, reduces isolation, and provides economic stability for the veterans and their families throughout the recovery process.
“As a recovering warrior and someone who has been very involved in this issue since I was injured eight years ago, I can attest to how critical a program like the Recovering Warrior and Caregiver Program is in finding employment,” said Constantine. “Securing a fulfilling job and career is a huge step towards a successful recovery and feeling good about your future. Our high-touch, detail-oriented approach, as demonstrated by this fantastic event in Boston, is proving to be a successful model.”
More than 5.5 million men and women nationwide provide extensive or full-time care for recovering warriors of all eras. According to a 2014 RAND Corporation study commissioned by the Dole Foundation, military caregivers report significantly elevated levels of mental, physical, and financial stress associated with caring for a disabled veteran. Flexible and meaningful employment can improve the quality of life for both caregivers and their veterans.
The Boston Recovering Warrior Conference held today marked the 800th hiring event since Hiring Our Heroes began in March 2011. Through extensive pre-matching, more than 40 wounded veterans entered the conference with a total of more than 165 interviews already scheduled. The next RWCP events include a Virtual Job Scout online career fair on December 9th, 2014 and a military caregiver employment summit in Washington, D.C. on October 30th, 2014.
Hiring Our Heroes is a nationwide initiative to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment. Working with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s vast network of state and local chambers and other strategic partners from the public, private and nonprofit sectors, Hiring Our Heroes has helped hundreds of thousands of veterans and military spouses find meaningful employment. And as a direct result of more than 800 job fairs in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia, 24,000 men and women have been hired by more than 1,500 businesses.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness by addressing developments that affect our nation, our economy and the global business environment.