Friday, January 22, 2016

Team Hope For The Warriors Newsletter: January

Team Hope For The Warriors® has a lot of exciting events planned for the 2016 season! Guarantee your spot in these popular events:

Current 2016 Team Hope For The Warriors® Schedule

March 20, 2016— United Airlines NYC Half

July 24, 2016— Panasonic NYC Tri

Stay tuned as more races get added to our 2016 schedule. 

Fundraising Tip
Let your supporters know what their contribution can do for service members, veterans, their families, and families of the fallen: 
  • $10 Provides a meal to a service member at a hunting or fishing trip
  • $25 Covers meals for a spouse visiting a wounded service member in the hospital
  • $100 Provides childcare for a service member attending standing Dr. appointments 
  • $500 Covers books/supplies for a scholarship recipient
  • $1,000 Travel/lodging to a brain treatment facility
  • $5,500 Provides a new handcycle for a wounded service member to help in his or her recovery process

Training Tip
Great article from Runners World on stretches and exercises to do before and after running to improve form and efficiency!

Team Member Corner: Eva Casale

Since 2006 Eva Casale, has run 54 full marathons and 32 ultramarathons, raising over $100,000 for several organizations. Now Team EVA (Every Veteran Appreciated) is taking on a new challenge, running 7 marathons in 7 days to raise funds and awareness for Hope For The Warriors®! Eva will complete 184 miles, running in honor of a different service member for each mile. She is starting and finishing each marathon at different Suffolk Federal Credit Union locations, in Long Island, NY, and is asking the community to donate to military families and join her in her run.

You can register to run with Eva today! You do not have to participate in all 7 of her 26.2-mile runs, but you can pick a day to join her for the last 7 miles of her run. Be part of the Team and encourage Eva along as you support military families.

Program Information

Charity Navigator:
For the 5th year in a row, Hope For The Warriors® has received a four-star rating on Charity Navigator. This exceptional rating, achieved by only 5% of the nonprofits they evaluate, highlights Hope For The Warriors® financial responsibility to the service members, military families, and families of the fallen we support. Team members can continue to ask people to donate towards fundraising goals with confidence! We invite you to view their latest evaluation of our efforts on the Charity Navigator website.

A Warrior’s Wish®:
This year, Hope For The Warriors® will grant 11 wishes to support service members, veterans, and military families. The nature of these Wishes will vary in scope from business, fitness, financial, and outdoor-related. The enrichment process will continue long after the Wish is granted to promote stability within the lives of these heroes and their families. As the Wishes are granted we will share the stories in the upcoming newsletters. Learn more about A Warriors Wish

For more information please contact Steve Barto at

Rock ‘n’ Roll Series:
The Rock ‘n’ Roll race series has teamed up with everydayhero as their official fundraising platform. You can now run in any Rock ‘n’ Roll event and raise funds for Hope For The Warriors! Beginning March 1st, every race participant will be asked if they want to fundraise on behalf of their favorite cause during the race registration process. When you register and are asked to choose your charity, pick Hope For The Warriors® and you will automatically be given a Rock ‘n’ Roll everydayhero fundraising page!  

Run For The Warriors®:

Save the date for the 2016 Run For The Warriors® Race Series:
  • April 23, Charlotte, NC 
    • Inaugural Charlotte Run For The Warriors 
  • May 14, Jacksonville, NC
    • 11th Annual Run For The Warriors
  • May 29, Oldsmar, FL
    • 2nd Annual Memorial Day Run For The Warriors
  • June 5, New York, NY
    • 7th Annual Big Apple Run For The Warriors
  • July 4, New Bern, NC
    • 5th Annual New Bern Run For The Warriors
  • August 21, Shelton, CT
    • 7th Annual Sunset Run For The Warriors
  • September 25, Secaucus, NJ
    • 6th Annual Harmon Meadow Run For The Warriors
  • October 16, Washington, DC
    • 3rd Annual DMV Run For The Warriors
  • October 23, Chicago, IL
    • 7th Annual ASA Sponsored Run For The Warriors
  • November 12, Lindenhurst, NY
    • 9th Annual Long Island Run For The Warriors 

Stay tuned for the 2016 Run For The Warriors® Race Series Registration sites,

Representing the Team:
Be sure to shoot us an email with your race schedule and where you will be wearing your Team jersey. Each time you wear your jersey, you help our mission to restore self, family, and hope. Feel free to share photos and special stories too!

Important Links For Social Media:
Twitter When you tweet be sure to use #TeamH4W

Thursday, January 7, 2016

A Warrior's Wish: Wounded Marine finds HOPE and healing in Music

Cpl Nathan Jakubisin with his new drum set
While conducting a foot patrol in Kajaki, Afghanistan on June 5, 2012, Cpl Nathan Jakubisin stepped on an IED.  As a result of the blast, he lost his right leg and obtained an open compound fracture to his left leg. Other injuries include multiple fractures to his hand and wrist, partially amputated fifth digit, chemical burns, lung trauma, PTSD, and mTBI.

He arrived at Walter Reed Naval hospital on June 10, 2012. It was not until two weeks after his arrival that he woke up from a drug induced coma. Over the past two and a half years, he has undergone many surgeries and rigorous therapy sessions. 

Cpl Jakubisin joined Musicorps, a band of wounded service members at Walter Reed hospital.  As a band member he has learned to play with his prosthetic and finds that music is beneficial to his overall rehabilitation. By asking for a drum set, he and his wife hope that he can continue his therapeutic hobby once Nathan has medically separated from the USMC and is able to move home. 

He is currently enrolled in online classes to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security. He and his wife welcomed their first child in January 2014. The family is originally from Cambridge, OH but is excited to move into their newly built wheelchair accessible home in NC.

Hope’s MSW intern, Paula Valles out of the NC office on Camp Lejeune found an article that specifically highlights how the use of drums are used as part of music interventions and has provided a generous synopsis below:

Bensimon, Amir and Wolf’s (2012) article discusses the benefits of using music as a therapeutic intervention to cope with PTSD symptoms.  Studies have shown that traumatic events and music are both learned and absorbed in the brain through sensory meditation.  Bensimon et al.’s (2012) research demonstrates how music might serve as an inviting and unintimidating alternative to explore traumatic memories.  Music therapy can therefore, be an alternative form of shock/exposure therapy or “talk therapy” such that service members are not forced to logically and explicitly revisit painful memories directly in an uncomfortable situation. Music therapy allows military personnel the ability to express themselves and confront emotional difficulties through art therapy on their own terms and with their own creativity.  The terms of the study included soldiers ages 20-23 with PTSD and placed them in a music group to play the drums for a 16 week period; after 10 weeks with the interventions the group expressed feeling a “reduction of symptoms” (Bensimon et al., 2012).  In addition, the participants felt a sense of “belongingness, closeness, togetherness and sharing”; they were able to relate to and connect with one another again without explicitly sharing wartime experiences (Bensimon et al., 2012).  Finally, the study revealed an overall improvement in well-being and sense of self.  Music, such as the drumming interventions, facilitated an outlet for anger, rage, solace and promoted self-control for service members.   

A Warrior’s Wish® received support from Theodora Yoga and the local Columbus, OH Guitar Center to grant Nathan’s Wish.