Hi! My name is Jeff Turner, and I am trying to help the veteran and first responder heroes and their families who have sacrificed so much and who are dealing daily with the wounds and scars that result from those sacrifices. The wounds to their bodies are often visible, but the wounds to their souls -- deep emotional wounds -- are often not so easily seen...and not so easily dealt with. Together, you and I can make a difference in the lives of these heroes and help them on their journey to healing.
The purpose of this gofundme is to raise money to help veterans, first responders, and their families with services such as:
* PTSD recovery programs designed specifically for combat veterans and for first responders * Marriage and family counseling * Grief counseling for survivors * Veterans benefits assistance * Therapy dog assistance * Self-defense & home defense training (especially for survivor families and disabled heroes, but open to all hero families) * Other services as we become aware of their need
We want to provide these services at no cost to the families. In order to make this happen, we are setting up a non-profit organization called Honor, Help, & Healing for Heroes, and the services will be underwritten by donations from people, such as yourself, who have a desire to thank these heroes and their families who have given so much of themselves for us.
The inspiration behind this comes from my late brother, Terry Turner, who was a United States Coast Guard veteran and who had a heart for honoring and helping other veterans. When he died, I wanted to do something special in his honor, and this project was born. A family friend and special friend of Terry's was PFC Brian Smith, who died in 2005 at age 21 while training at Camp Lejeune for the 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd Marine Division. This project is also in his honor.
In addition to Terry and Brian, my life has been touched in many ways by other veterans, police officers, firemen, paramedics, and EMTs, and I've seen the sacrifices that they and their families make. This project is my way of saying "Thank you" to them.
Every day combat veterans return home with physical and emotional injuries, or they are brought home having paid the ultimate price, and their families are faced with the horrible task of picking up the pieces and trying to move forward. Every day first responders deal with unimaginable life-and-death situations, many of which end in tragedy for them or for those they are trying to help. Again, they and their families are left with physical and emotional scars and life-jarring consequences that often turn their world upside down.
I talk with these people on a daily basis, and I see the hurt in their eyes as they tell me their stories. I always shake their hands, give them a hug, pray for them, and say a heartfelt "Thank you for your service." But in the end, I wish I could do more. I'm sure you do, too. Well now, we can do more. We can put actions behind our words. Through Honor, Help, & Healing for Heroes, we can give tangible help and make a real, long-term difference in the lives of these heroes and their families.
What I've done so far...
* I have set up a website (http://www.help4heroes.org ) that explains what we are doing. It is in its beginning stages, and there will be a lot more content added in the near future as things progress.
* I have also been working with an organization that has two proven, faith-based PTSD recovery programs, one specifically for veterans and another specifically for first responders. I am working with them to get these programs rolled out in the Atlanta area, with plans to expand into other areas as we have funds and opportunity.
* In addition, I have found faith-based counselors who are interested in working with us to provide marriage and family counseling, PTSD intensive counseling, survivor's grief counseling, and any other counseling services that are needed.
* I have talked with a friend of mine who is a lawyer who specializes in helping with veterans benefits. He is a veteran himself, and has helped many other veterans with the often grueling process of getting benefits that are due to them.
* I have talked with service dog trainers about how to assist in getting heroes service dogs that can help them with daily life.
* As a self-defense, firearms, and security consultant, I have put together a program to help hero families secure their homes and be safe in their daily lives. While the veterans and police officers themselves may be well-trained in defending themselves and their homes, their families may not feel as adequately trained for the times that their hero is deployed or on-duty. And survivors of fallen heroes may feel vulnerable, and even helpless, as can heroes who have become disabled.
What you can do...
* I am doing all that I can with the resources that I have, but the bottom line is that we need money to actually make this happen. We all benefit from the sacrifices these heroes make. Whether you can donate $25, $100, $1000, or even more, every donation will help make a difference in their lives. These heroes and their families have sacrificed greatly for us, and I'm asking you to dig deep and make a sacrifice of your own to say a heart-felt "Thank you" to those heroes.
* Some of you may want to set up a memorial fund in honor of a fallen hero that you know that will help with on-going support of this project. Contact me through the website, and I can help you do that.
* In addition to donating, we need help getting the word out. Please share this with your friends on social media with links to the website and the gofundme campaign. Tell your church and businesses that you frequent about this and encourage them to help.
* We need volunteers to help with fundraising and with providing services to the heroes.
* Most importantly, we need prayer. This project is based on love for our heroes, and for me the source of that love is Christ, but it is given freely with no strings attached to anyone who has need.
Thank you so much for your help! The heroes and their families thank you, too!