Mental Health Awareness Month Highlights Nonprofit’s Commitment to Students Pursuing Mental Health Degrees

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Hope For The Warriors® provides internship to students pursuing Masters in Social Work

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Hope For The Warriors® set forth to educate, train, and contribute to the growth and development of passionate, competent military social workers.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and for students pursuing degrees in the mental health field, applied experience is key. Hope For The Warriors® provides the unique opportunity of field placement for Masters of Social Work (MSW) students in their foundation or advanced second year of graduate school. The ultimate goal of the program work with each intern is to ensure that they graduate and enter the field of social work with thorough understanding of the needs and challenges of today’s military family and a respect for their service and sacrifice. Hope For The Warriors® is a national nonprofit dedicated to restoring a sense of self, restoring the family unit, and restoring hope for our service members and our military families.

Since the start of the Program in fall 2012, Hope For The Warriors® has placed 25 MSW students into internships within the organization. Through the MSW Internship Program, students gain firsthand experience by working closely with staff members experienced with supporting military families. Opportunities include formal and experiential military cultural competency training, one-on-one interaction with service members, veterans, family members, and caregivers, supervision by a Licensed Master Social Worker or Licensed Clinical Social Worker, experience with and in-depth knowledge of the needs and challenges of today’s military and their families.

As a small but national nonprofit organization, Hope For The Warriors® has utilized the MSW Internship Program to positively increase services provided. Six semesters of the internship have supported the expansion of Case and Crisis Management, Clinical Intervention and Support, Organization Development, and Grant Research and Writing. Interns have provided approximately 17,500 hours of program support since its inception, significantly increasing the quantity and quality of case management and care coordination within the organization.

Especially during Mental Health Awareness Month, Hope For The Warriors® understands the importance of being leaders in the field of mental health. Hope For The Warriors® has hired five staff members who completed the MSW Internship Program and two additional staff members are on course to graduate from the program.

“As a MSW student specializing in military social work, an internship placement that allowed me to work with this population was of the utmost importance,” said Jory Watson, a Critical Care Coordinator and graduate of the program. “As social workers, we seek to engage people and systems in order to address challenges, navigate life changes, and enhance wellbeing. The holistic, multi-faceted approach utilized by Hope For The Warriors® to address the needs of those touched by military service provided an invaluable learning experience.”

Bringing awareness to mental illness, fighting the stigma, and providing education and support to service members and military families is the focus of the Hope For The Warriors® Clinical Health & Wellness pillar. The MSW Internship Program allows graduate students to engage in formal and real-world military cultural competency training, experiencing social work throughout the entire year.

“As the specialty of Military Social Work expands, Hope For The Warriors® recognizes the need to train the future providers to our warriors and their families,” said Tricia Winklosky, Clinical Health & Wellness Director with Hope For The Warriors®. “Hope For The Warriors® set forth to educate, train, and contribute to the growth and development of passionate, competent military social workers.”

Hope For The Warriors® has worked with interns from Fordham University, Columbia University, University of Southern California, Touro College, Eastern Carolina University, and Southern Illinois State University.

For more information on the MSW Internship Program with Hope For The Warriors®, contact Tricia Winklosky, MS-ATR, at


Hope For The Warriors® Mission Statement:
We believe those touched by military service can succeed at home by restoring their sense of self, family, and hope. Nationally, Hope For The Warriors® provides comprehensive support programs for service members, veterans, and military families that are focused on transition, health and wellness, peer engagement, and connections to community resources.

Hope For The Warriors® has earned a Four-Star Rating from Charity Navigator ( for four consecutive years. Charity Navigator is an independent organization that evaluates fiscal responsibility and accountability of nonprofits.

Hope For The Warriors® (Federal Tax ID 20-5182295) is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity as defined in sections 509(A)(1) and 170(B)(1)(A)(VI) of the Internal Revenue Code. Combined Federal Campaign, CFC #27800.

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Ashley Monaghan
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