UBC's veterans transition program helping veterans with trauma

The best way to remember Canada's veterans may be just not to forget them. We hear what's being done to help combat veterans leave combat behind them.



Part Three of The Current

UBC's Veterans Transition program helping Veterans with trauma

About a thousand Canadian soldiers remain in Afghanistan as part of a NATO mission, even though Canada's combat mission is over. The cost of that mission has been far higher than Canadians are used to paying. 158 soldiers killed. More than 600 injured. And those are the injuries that can be seen. It's estimated that one in four returning vets will suffer from some form of psychological injury.

We aired a clip from some Canadian soldiers featured in War in the Mind ...a documentary airing tonight on TV Ontario. The soldiers are participants in a unique program at the University of British Columbia designed to help them transition to civilian life. It's based on the simple premise of soldiers helping soldiers. Who better to understand battle trauma than brothers and sisters in arms?

Marvin Westwood is a UBC counselling psychologist and one of the founders of the Veterans Transition Program. He was in our Vancouver studio, along with two Afghan veterans and graduates of the transition program, Tim Laidler and Jason Villeneuve.

Last Word - Canadian hospital ship, Lady Nelson

We mentioned earlier that many of the stories of Canada's soldiers are available at The Memory Project .

One veteran you might meet there is Halifax native Philip Herbert Etter. He was stationed aboard the Canadian hospital ship the Lady Nelson in 1944. And he was busy. Canadian troops were taking terrible losses as they moved towards Rome. That winter, the earth itself was in upheaval. Vesuvius erupted as the Lady Nelson was floating in the Bay of Naples. Philip Etter's reaction is today's Last Word.


Other segments from today's show:

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