The Midwest Reiki Community (MRC) was invited for the second year in a row to participate in Stand Down, a Department of Veterans Affairs event providing community and services for homeless Veteran held on June 21 and 22 at the National Guard Armory in Chicago.
Stand Downs are organized across the country and are typically one to three day events providing homeless Veterans services such as food, shelter, clothing, health screenings, VA and Social Security benefits counseling, and referrals to a variety of other necessary services, such as housing, employment and substance abuse treatment. Stand Downs are collaborative events, coordinated between local VAs, other government agencies, and community agencies who serve the homeless.
After putting out a call for volunteers, we had an overwhelming response from members of the MRC to provide free 10-minute Reiki treatments to attendees to help address symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and other physical and emotional pain from which these former defenders of our country suffer.
The response to experiencing Reiki was in many cases tear-jerking and transformative, and many veterans wanted to learn more about Reiki treatments and attunements. We hope the effects of our sharing will also help the VA to recognize Reiki is an excellent way to address the mental and physical health issues facing our Veterans.
Thank you to all who made it an incredible event—particularly to Heather McCutcheon who spearheaded this outreach initiative—and to Paul Duffy and Molly Coeling for helping to coordinate and document these amazing testimonials from both Reiki recipients and our MRC volunteers: