Grant to Support Master of Social Work Internship Program Allowing Social Work Services to Expand

SPRINGFIELD, Va. (April 25, 2018) –  Thanks to a three-year $510,000 grant from Altria Group Hope For The Warriors is continuing to serve veterans, service members and military families through its Master of Social Work (MSW) Internship Program.

Hope For The Warriors is a national nonprofit dedicated to restoring a sense of self, family and hope for veterans, service members and military families.

Just one year into the grant, Hope For The Warriors has been able to place 12 MSW interns providing services to 681 military persons.

“At Hope For The Warriors we believe in a holistic approach to well-being, impacting many areas of a service member’s life,” said Robin Kelleher, co-founder, president and CEO of Hope For The Warriors. As we enter into our second year of Altria Group’s three-year commitment, we’re already seeing the positive results of this grant as we’ve been able to increase the quantity and quality of care through our case management and care coordination services.”

The goal of the Hope For The Warriors MSW Internship Program is to train tomorrow’s military and veteran mental health service providers by ensuring that interns enter the social work profession with a thorough understanding of the unique needs of military families. The program provides a progression in skills training – starting from military cultural competency, critical care case management and family support culminating in the provision of clinical services to Hope For The Warriors’ clients.

During the MSW Internship Program, interns gain first-hand experience by working under Hope For The Warriors’ licensed social workers. Learning opportunities include formal and experiential military cultural competency training; one-on-one interaction with service members and veterans and training and application of trauma-informed practices to client care.

During the summer of 2017, Lindsey, an MSW intern, began working with a female veteran as she transitioned to civilian life. Medically retiring due to combat injuries, the single mom of four moved to a new state to be closer to family. While the veteran waited on VA benefits to begin, she reached out to Lindsey for financial assistance through Hope For The Warriors to cover her housing expenses. Thanks to the trust built with the MSW intern, the veteran and her family received the extra financial support while she waited for her VA benefits, keeping her family in their home.

“We can’t express our gratitude enough to Lindsey and Hope For The Warriors for their support and generosity,” said the veteran. “If it weren’t for Lindsey advocating on my behalf, I would have lost our apartment, stability for my children and confidence in myself.”

Benefiting from the Altria Group grant, Hope For The Warriors Master of Social work intern Dana learned to use her personal approach when working with clients.

I am so happy that the University of Southern California was able to set me up with an internship with Hope For The Warriors. When I did my pre-interview research about the organization, I found that their mission and holistic approach to serving the military and veteran population fit well with my own perspective on care.

“During my internship, I learned that Hope For The Warriors works very hard to provide programs and services that help the service members, veterans and their families to find their path to resiliency. I am so proud to be working for an organization that puts so much effort into doing the best they can for the population they serve,” added Dana.

Since it was launched in 2012, the MSW Internship Program has placed more than 50 students. These interns have provided almost 25,000 hours of support to the Hope For The Warriors Clinical Health and Wellness programs during this period.

For more information on Hope For The Warriors, visit hopeforthewarriors.orgFacebook or Twitter.

About Hope For The Warriors: 

Founded in 2006, Hope For The Warriors is a national nonprofit dedicated to restoring a sense of self, family and hope for post 9/11 veterans, service members and military families. Since its inception, Hope For The Warriors has served more than 19,000 through a variety of support programs focused on transition services, clinical health and wellness, sports and recreation and community development. The nonprofit’s first program, A Warrior’s Wish, has granted more than 180 wishes to fulfill a desire for a better quality of life or support a quest for gratifying endeavors. In addition, Run For The Warriors has captured the hearts of more than 23,500 since 2010. For more information, visit hopeforthewarriors.org,Facebook or Twitter.

Atria Group, Inc:

Altria’s wholly-owned subsidiaries include PM USA, USSTC, Middleton, Nat Sherman, Nu Mark, Ste. Michelle and PMCC.  Altria holds an equity investment in AB InBev. The brand portfolios of Altria’s tobacco operating companies include Marlboro®, Black & Mild®, Copenhagen®, Skoal®, MarkTen® and Green Smoke®.  Ste. Michelle produces and markets premium wines sold under various labels, including Chateau Ste. Michelle®, Columbia Crest®, 14 Hands® and Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars™, and it imports and markets Antinori®, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte™, Torres® and Villa Maria Estate™ products in the United States.  Trademarks and service marks related to Altria referenced in this release are the property of Altria or its subsidiaries or are used with permission.  More information about Altria is available at altria.com and on the Altria Investor app.