Imagine a simple, personal, non-pharmacological tool for veterans, proven by research to achieve a 40% reduction in the symptoms of post-traumatic stress syndrome and depression, a 42% decrease in insomnia, and a 30% improvement in satisfaction with quality of life. Veterans in Northeast Ohio are being given that tool through a grant from the Resurrecting Lives Foundation, in conjunction with the David Lynch Foundation: one-on-one training in meditation.
Since October, RLF has partnered with the Lynch Foundation to enable veterans in the Ohio cities of Columbus and Canton to take part in this life-changing training at no cost. RLF’s grant was made possible through the generous donations of people and businesses around the country. David Kidd, the instructor for these Ohio courses, is himself an Army veteran who found that meditation eased his transition from military life following the war in Vietnam.
“After two tours in Vietnam, at age 20 I returned to the USA,” he said. “I started college, but was unable to concentrate, had insomnia, nightmares, night sweats, hyper-vigilance, daytime hallucinations and flashbacks, a constant low-grade paranoia, social alienation, and an inability to feel positive emotions. Then a friend took me to a … meditation class. I took the course. I saw many benefits in the first week, and within three months could see my life had changed dramatically. In my first year of meditating, 90% of my stress symptoms were completely gone. So I decided to become a teacher and offer it to other veterans. I’ve now been teaching meditation for 43 years.”
Over the last few months, 12 Ohio vets have applied for and received the individualized training. Says one veteran, “I am the recipient of one of the grants for veterans for … meditation. I just wanted to thank you guys for providing the grants, and I want you to know it’s working for me, and it’s amazing. Thank you guys so much. I’m very grateful.”
Meditation has been found to reduce the physical symptoms of stress in addition to bringing calmness and resilience to the mind. The David Lynch Foundation’s Operation Warrior Wellness has brought this peace to hundreds of vets.
There are still some remaining opportunities for this RLF-sponsored training for vets in Columbus or Canton, Ohio during January and February, on a first-come basis as spaces are available. If you are interested in applying, please contact RLF at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (614) 602-1753, or contact David Kidd directly at email@example.com.
Photography by Jason Savage