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Veterans Summit Advance August 2011
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Mental Health Summit To Address How to help Military Returning from Deployments

Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2011 [12:50 PM]

COLUMBIA, Ky. -- Helping U.S. military personnel and veterans readjust to civilian life will be the topic of an upcoming mental-health summit at Lindsey Wilson College.

The "Summit on Veteran Mental Health Issues: Understanding Individuals, Families and Systems" will be held on Sept. 7 at Lindsey Wilson. The conference is sponsored by the LWC Institute for Advanced Study.

The purpose of the one-day meeting is to bring together mental-health professionals and experts on veterans affairs from various government agencies and private organizations in the region. The professionals will explore how to meet mental-health needs of U.S. military personnel and veterans who have returned from deployment in Afghanistan and Iraq.

"There are some truly wonderful people doing some wonderful things for their communities," said Jennifer Williamson, LWC associate professor of human services and counseling and director of the Institute for Advanced Study. "The aim of our summit is to learn about things that are being done to help military personnel reintegrate into society."

Hardin County, Ky., home of Fort Knox Army post, expects more than 3,500 overseas military to return to its region, said LWC Associate Professor of Human Services and Counseling Daniel Williamson. Some military personnel and veterans might have to confront trauma issues, which could manifest in mental-health conditions such as posttraumatic stress disorder.

Other military personnel and veterans might face more subtle challenges when it comes to readjusting to everyday life back home.

"Some individuals might have a difficult time reintegrating into their families," Daniel Williamson said. "For example, when military personnel with children were deployed, they might have had a child at home who was an infant. Now that child is a toddler, so there is the issue of learning how to deal with that and reintroducing oneself to one's son or daughter."

For more information about "Summit on Veteran Mental Health Issues: Understanding Individuals, Families and Systems," to be held Sept. 7 at LWC, contact Williamson at williamsonj@lindsey.edu or (270) 634-4921.

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