Helping our Female Veterans Return to Civilian Life
By Anne Akers, Cause Connector
“Members of our armed forces make enormous sacrifices for this nation. The least we owe them when they return to civilian life is a chance to earn a living, support their families, and have a stable place to rest their heads each night.” – Hilda L. Solis, Secretary U.S. Department of Labor
Two awesome tomatoes, Julie Lewit-Nirenberg and Nancy Northrop, co-founders of Operation Reinvent, couldn’t agree more with that statement. And when it comes to our female veterans, reentering life as a civilian, rediscovering their femininity, and re-entering the job market, can be daunting. Julie, is a successful business executive who helped launch Ms. Magazine, and always been involved in women’s issues, mentoring, empowering, and celebrating women. Nancy Northrop is a successful entrepreneur and brings a passion to the cause that mirrors her pride as a Navy mom. Together they are on a mission to help our female veterans.
The military has more women in its ranks than ever….but what happens when they leave?
Over 725,000 female veterans have served in the Armed Forces since September 2001 and it is expected that more than 24,000 women will transition from military service in the foreseeable future. More than 79% of these women are under the age of 40 and 39% have children in the home. While women enjoy gender equality in the armed services, they face many challenges upon entering the competitive U.S. job market. Without adequate preparation and a strong support system, female veterans are likely to experience isolation and extended periods of joblessness or employment below their experience, skills and value in the workplace.
Operation Reinvent offers life changing programs to help our female veterans transition back into civilian life and into new careers.
Enter Operation Reinvent, a 501 (c) (3) organization, whose mission is to offer Career Transition and Empowerment programs, designed to reconnect these women with a renewed sense of confidence, a reconnection with their femininity, and with a sense of community now that she has stepped out of uniform. This is accomplished by two-day workshops conducted on-site at military installations across the nation, prior to their separation from military service.
The goal of Operation Reinvent is to expand these workshops to a growing number of transitioning women, to offer potential employers access to this pipeline of talented women and to become a “go-to” online career resource and community for all female Veterans.
Sponsor a Female Veteran
As we approach the Veteran’s Day holiday, it seems like a perfect time to remember these women, their families, and the personal sacrifices they have made to keep us free and to honor all that has made America the greatest nation in the free world.
It takes less than $1 a day to sponsor a Veteran through the Operation Reinvent Career Transition & Empowerment Program. Donations in any amount can be made at www.operationreinvent.org.
Baby Boomers, “empty nesters”, retirees, and Tomatoes, all have invaluable experiences, knowledge, stories, and “gifts to give” for the many causes that are deserving of our attention.Anne Akers is a great “cause connector”. She has been involved in many levels of not-for-profit work for decades, including Gala Committees, board service, and much more, with an emphasis on women’s health, financial literacy, military women, and female empowerment. In addition, you may know her as the Founder/Editor in Chief of GLOW Beauty, Health and Wellness Magazine; the Founder/Publisher of Castle Connolly Graduate Medical Publishing; co-Founder of MDPublish.com, an Author Coach/Consultant and a business development/marketing specialist in the alternative and traditional medicine fields.