Contact: Lisa A. Taylor (202) 707-2333; Monica Mohindra (202) 707-1071

June 13, 2014

Veterans History Project Recognizes National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Day

In recognition of National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Day, the Library of Congress Veterans History Project (VHP) will host a discussion panel on the causes, effects and alternative treatments for PTSD among military veterans. Panelists include veterans who will share their personal experiences with PTSD and experts who work directly with PTSD-diagnosed veterans. In addition, the discussion will highlight the importance of folklore in dealing with PTSD and how beneficial the VHP interview process can be for these veterans.

The event takes place on Friday, June 27, at noon in the Whittall Pavilion, located on the ground floor of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First Street, SE, Washington, D.C. This event is free and open to the public; no reservations are required. Light refreshments will be served.

"The Veterans History Project seeks the wartime accounts of America’s veterans," said VHP Director Bob Patrick. "Often, these personal stories are painful to relate due to the memories they elicit and the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder. Yet for some, the telling of their story can contribute to their healing and bring some closure to their ordeal. This panel will be a discussion on the effects of the human experience of war and the value of storytelling."

Panelists will include retired U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Karen Lynn Fears, who has been diagnosed with PTSD; Richard Tedeschi, a professor, licensed psychologist and author who specializes in bereavement and trauma; Gala True, core investigator at Philadelphia Veterans Affairs and research assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, who has assisted veterans transitioning back into civilian life; and David "Kelly" Williams, retired U.S. Navy Hospital Corpsman and the Veterans Employment Program manager for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Williams works to ensure employment opportunities for veterans.

Congress created the Veterans History Project in 2000 as a national documentation program of the American Folklife Center (www.loc.gov/folklife/) to collect, preserve and make accessible the firsthand remembrances of wartime veterans who served in the U.S. military in any capacity from World War I through the more recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. VHP also seeks to increase the number of stories from veterans who have been diagnosed with PTSD as part of its ongoing efforts, mandated by the U.S. Congress, to increase collections from targeted subgroups of wartime veterans. The project relies on volunteers to record veterans’ remembrances using easy-to-follow guidelines accessible at www.loc.gov/vets/. Volunteers may request more information at vohp@loc.gov or the toll-free message line at (888) 371-5848. Subscribe to VHP’s RSS on the VHP home page.

The Library of Congress, the nation's oldest federal cultural institution, is the world's preeminent reservoir of knowledge, providing unparalleled collections and integrated resources to Congress and the American people. Access the Library’s website at www.loc.gov.

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PR 14-104
06/13/14
ISSN 0731-3527

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