RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - In order to raise awareness about issues affecting veterans, Mission 22 held their first Coffee with a Vet this morning at Starbucks on Mount Rushmore Road.
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, more than 20 veterans take their lives every day.
Mission 22 is a non-profit organization helping combat that suicide rate through veteran treatment programs, memorials and events like this. According to South Dakota's Mission 22 team leader, Chris Cooper, veterans with PTSD tend to isolate themselves and develop unhealthy thinking. Coffee with a Vet is designed to help those veterans cope with that unhealthy thinking.
"Getting together people and talking to people about anything, whatever's on your mind, it helps," said Cooper. "It's always better to be able to just talk to somebody you can trust, somebody who knows what you know and knows what you've been through and it gives you that chance to get it out there instead of bottling it up and letting it eat you up inside. It takes a community to heal a warrior and they can't do it themselves, it takes everybody to heal them and that's what we can do."
Mission 22 will hold Coffee with a Vet in Rapid City every first Friday of the month at the Starbucks on West Main in the Gap from 10 a.m. to Noon and on every third Friday of the month at Starbucks at the Mount Rushmore Road location.