In early May, Northern Indiana VA hosted a Women Veterans Health Mixer Resource Fair. The idea behind the mixer came from Northern Indiana Women Veterans.
After a series of women-focused town halls and focus groups, the Veterans expressed their desire for a VA-sponsored event that provides a relaxed atmosphere that allows them to network of other Women Veterans.
“Our goal is to create a more welcoming environment. We need to give our Women Veterans the opportunity to interact with other Women Veterans and offer them something more than information booths, ”said Kasandra Johnson, manager of the Women’s Veteran program- an.
Opportunity to learn about specific women’s health care options
Women Veterans were treated to a free canvas painting donated by Canvas Kreations. The owner of Canvas Kreations is also a female Veteran and kindly donated her time, 42 canvases, brush, and paint for the event.
The mixer also provides an opportunity for Female Veterans to meet with their VA health care staff and interact with other Veterans while learning about specific health care options in VA. Community partners also participated and provided additional resources for Veterans attending the mixer.
Live music therapy was held at the medical center, and the VA Center for Development & Civic Engagement office helped provide refreshments, gift bags and raffle prizes. Gift bags include cleaning items, Mary Kay products, clothing and other women’s health gifts.
“Many donors are very involved with the items donated during the mixer and resource fair. A $ 5000 donation was made by Elks #155. Other sponsors include American Legion Auxiliary Post 82, Milford Food Bank, the Veteran of Foreign Wars, and the American Legion, ”said Natasha McClanahan, Center for Development & Civic Engagement supervisory specialist.