Gerald Vest: Visit Our US Army, Ft. Bliss Restoration & Resilience Center - Slide Show    
 Visit Our US Army, Ft. Bliss Restoration & Resilience Center - Slide Show19 comments
picture20 Aug 2009 @ 13:43, by Gerald Vest

Depression & Trauma--Just as the increased physical arousal that comes with being aggressive can cause anger to spiral upward, decreased physical arousal can cause a downward cycle into inactivity and deeper depression. Being in a depressed mood makes it hard to enjoy many activities, and the less active you are, the more likely you are to feel depressed. A depressed mood can also cause you to see things more negatively, making it harder to motivate yourself to participate in activities. And the less active you are, the more time you have to dwell on negative thoughts about yourself, making you feel even more depressed. Courage After Fire-Coping Strategies for Troops Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and their Families by Keith Armstrong, LCSW/Suzanne Best, Ph.D./Paula Domenici, Ph.D.

Do visit our US Army Restoration & Resilience Center slide presentation.

To really know about our experience, you would have to be be in our trauma health center on a daily basis. However, when a wounded warrior enters our program during their first week and beyond, they are given a Primary & Secondary Therapist, while receiving our Integrative Health methods--Reiki, Medical Massage, Acupuncture, meditation, movement therapy, expressive arts--and, one of our experienced soldiers is assigned to assist and support him. He will also have had a group therapy session daily, supplemented with 2 individual sessions. If he is married his family is invited for a family or couple session.

In addition to serving as a Primary Therapist, teaching meditation, coordinating Water Polo, I serve as coordinator for our Health Education Program. I schedule weekly workshops and presentations related to holistic health--nutrition, touch, movement, anger management, fitness, breathing, neurology, academic opportunities, and other health related activities such as Sweat Lodge (see pic with Red Cloud), other multi-cultural, spiritual rituals and healing and treatment approaches identified in the slide show.

Our goal is to empower and offer our soldiers the best possible selfcare-skills, knowledge and awareness to guide, to heal and to learn about themselves. As identified in our slide show, we introduce them to 'best practice' tools/skills to manage their stress, anxiety and depression with the support of their family & whole being--physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

During my wonderful experience over the past 1 1/2 years with our R & R Center, I have seen everyone get better, with the vast majority, 61%, returning fit for duty to the Force.

I am very happy and pleased that I can be part of this Great Experience and Experiment. My thanks to everyone who makes our health center work, inside and outside. Special appreciation and thanks to all of my colleagues and especially Dr. John Fortunato, Chief and Founder.



[< Back] [Gerald Vest]



7 Sep 2009 @ 17:32 by a-d : This program must be
Heaven-sent for the Wounded Ones --as well as the Ones who do the facilitating: Shared Blessings! This Program seems awesome!...and I have a feeling it will only grow in Things To Offer (to the Soldiers, in the first hand... but secondary to ALL who are there) I can see it expanding with Classes in all the Good Way of Life that is --for instance-- presented in the YES Magazine and New Monetary System Advocates "your Courts" so to speak...Your Boys going out to the Streets sharing with the Grassroots about more Sustainable ways of living/life!.... I see only fantastic things coming from there!... My Mind is being flooded with wonderful images what these Men will be --very soon--very INSPIRED to taking out to the Public! What a WONDERFUL --and POWERFUL-- thing to happen!  

13 Sep 2009 @ 13:46 by jerryvest : Tlhanks for your observations and suppor
for our program and for others. We all feel called to action in the sense that our life experiences have brought our wounded warriors and staff together to empower the healing processes. Everyone does get better and we are all hopeful that other comprehensive PTSD treatment centers will spring up on every post in America. Every veteran and deployed service member should receive the very best treatment possible when he/she returns from combat.  

13 Jun 2010 @ 02:34 by mary ellen salzano @ : veterans..resilence
slide you have one for the Fort Bliss program, Sir? and is there any way we could have someone come from Fort Bliss/you., Dr. Fortunato and talk about the program here in CA?  

13 Jun 2010 @ 14:27 by jerryvest : Hello, Mary Ellen....
Yes, do click on the LINK at the end of my log to see the details. I also maintain a website that introduces many of our activities {link:} I am leaving the program in late July and will be able to do more consultation and teaching following this intensive and great experience working in a PTSD trauma center. Tell me more about you and your work so that we can network.

Thanks for visiting my logs. Best wishes, Jerry  

6 Nov 2010 @ 08:12 by casual wedding dresses plus size @ : casual wedding dresses plus size
If you feel casual wedding dresses plus size is so great, and you can introduce it to others to  

7 Feb 2011 @ 02:57 by Susan Pease Banitt, LCSW @ : Holistic Healing from Trauma
Well done! I have just finished writing a book on holistic healing from traumatic stress called: The Trauma Toolbox: Healing From the Inside Out. It is based in decades of work with trauma survivors and my own experience. It proposes a model of healing just like what you all are doing. Bravo. I would love to contact someone directly to interview soon for the book (It's due to the publisher at the end of the month!) Blessings!  

5 Apr 2011 @ 22:07 by ms wallace @ : how can you get THIS help??
my brother is an Iraq vet who they are sending back in august. He is in a military hospital right now after suffering a nervous breakdown this past weekend. I have been reading up on John Fortunato's center and its seems like this is what he needs. PLEASE tell me what we can do to get him this kind of help.  

6 Apr 2011 @ 01:02 by jerryvest : You can contact the Ft Bliss Behavioral
Health Center as most referrals come from them. However, some referrals have come from other resources. I suggest that you also talk with the Chief of the R & R Center, 915-569-3519 (front desk) and discuss your brother's injury and forthcoming deployment. I hope this works for you. The Center provides intensive and extensive integrative health practices, 35hrs. a week for 6 months and with followup services.

Do visit the R & R Center Program Design: {link:}  

11 May 2011 @ 07:07 by Bob Deschner @ : Vet TRIIP Based on Ft. Bliss & Ft. Hood
Hi Jerry,
I just missed meeting you at Fort Bliss two years ago when we toured there.
We developed the Vet TRIIP (Veterans Team Recovery Integrative Recovery Process) based upon what we learned from our visit to Ft. Bliss and talking with Dr. Jerry Wesch/Joe Chang/Dr. Marie Sprague at DAMC. Our goal was to see if we could replicate similar results in a one day program with part time follow through for veterans. We did four Vet TRIIP one days session for Vietnam vets, Women vets, OIF/OEF vets and mixed vets.
After over nine hours in each one day session we achieved two benefits: 1. Not have a single veteran left and 2. they reported a temporary cessation of symptoms for two days to two weeks, during which time they responded better to CBT/medications. By the way, all four sessions were conducted with zero budget and 100% volunteers--MDs, DOs, DCs, PhDs, LMTs, LAc's, EFT pratitioners, medical qigong/reiki practitioners and many others.
We are planning to replicate the program here in San Antonio.
We give thanks to you, John Fortunato and others for showing the rest of us the way to welcome these veterans back home.
The Best,
Bob Deschner

11 May 2011 @ 15:57 by jerryvest : Way to Go, Bob....sorry I missed you,
but am thrilled to see the positive results you are receiving with volunteer professionals. We are excited about replicating our integrative services in our Community and others as they are so effective for stress, anxiety and deprssion. One of the key elements that we are launching is a Sponsor/Advocate who is willing to be ready to serve our injured warriors returning to our communities. Today for our SNM Alliance we will launch this initiative: A Call for Advocates & Sponsors with our Injured/Wounded Warriors and their Families

I recommend that we examine the development and registration of community sponsors for our Injured Warriors and their families. We will establish working sponsors who are trained to be "on call" and ready to serve. These advocates can be student professionals and BSW's (Generalist Practitioners) in the helping professions or others who have a background in the military who are willing to volunteer to serve our returning Warriors. Also, we will develop a category of sponsors who are willing to donate $'s to support our Injured Warriors and their families with Integrative Health Services-Practices. We will build an account that we can draw on to provide these life saving and suicide prevention programs that truly reduce stress, anxiety and depression without drug dependency and addiction. We have identified our Ingegrative Health Programs and they all require administration, coordination and financial resources to be fully effective--holisitc, extensive and intensive opportunities for restoration, resilience and healing.

Thanks for commenting here. Do visit our website for up-to-date progress on our Alliance. Stay in touch and come visit when you can.


25 May 2011 @ 14:23 by Joe Starbuck @ : PTSD and Resilience
I've researched PTSD for 11 years. Developed the hypothesis that it is not psychological in onset, but actually a physiological injury where the mind's components arousal, emotion, cognition and memory are torn apart and brain script from childhood is shattered. These components begin to work independently of one another causing the common PTSD symptoms. Your work is wonderful, a holistic approach of CBT that helps the injured cope with an incurable condition. When I was first notified by an insider of this program however, I was under the false notion that it would be resilience training to PREVENT the injury, or building neurocircuitry from a 9V wire to 220V similar to Special Forces training. This would curb floodgates of the increasing flow of PTSD injuries; thereby consequently saving careers, reducing suicides and domestic violence - basically leaving battle on the battlefield as opposed to bringing it home if not treated within that 30-60 day window of recovery. The National Center for PTSD, Dept of the VA, indicated to me that they are working on the adrenergic system: again, post-treatment for an overwhelming population of those affected. Yes, I support your program; yes, I will continue to address building resilience to "prevent" this condition.  

25 May 2011 @ 22:22 by jerryvest : Thanks for participating
here, Joe. I appreciate what you are doing with your research and do agree that this injury does appear to be physiological at onset, but perhaps I have learned from Dr. Fortunato who provides us with PTSD 101 on a regular basis and his slide show introduces PTSD as a physiological injury at onset. All of the interventions are being researched to determine their effectiveness, but it will be another year before we see the results. I suspect this is a real challenge to separate out what works as the warriors receive all of the integrative therapies every week along with the therapeutic outings, and neurological work. Most of the soldiers that I discuss this with tell me that they believe it is the 4 group therapy sessions that produce the best improvements for them. Looking forward to learning more about your research, Joe.  

18 Sep 2013 @ 18:36 by Bob Deschner @ : Vet TRIIP Integrative Immersion Process
Hi Jerry,

Here is the link to our nonprofit organization which is conducting Integrative Immersion Process (IIP) Sessions in San Antonio, TX. Our mission is to honor and empower veterans, military service members, their families and service providers with Post-Traumatic Stress, chronic pain and related symptoms to create a healthy, happy and productive civilian life.  

18 Sep 2013 @ 20:09 by Bob Deschner @ : Fort Bliss Restoration & Resilience Prog
Here is a current link to the slide set about the Ft. Bliss R & R Program:  

18 Sep 2013 @ 20:11 by Bob Deschner @ : Fort Bliss Restoration & Resilience Prog
One more time...  

25 Sep 2013 @ 13:25 by jerryvest : thanks, Bob....your program looks
promising as was our R & R Center until the psychiatric drugging of our Injured Warriors and their families took them out of health and restoration into foggy, disoriented minds. I was very disappointed as our successful water polo activity was undermined by the prescribers who loaded our vets with their antipsychotics, sleep meds, etc. during our activity. Best wishes for successful program without drugs and with everyone committing to their self care plan. (See my website for this overview)  

25 Feb 2015 @ 16:55 by Homes Cares @ : Very interesting article. I would love t
Very interesting article. I would love to read the book “Start with Why”, by Simon Sinek. I think he has taken a great topic to deal with. Teaching leaders to inspire others is a good idea to bring up a civilized society. Thanks for sharing. Keep posting.  

7 Mar 2015 @ 09:24 by scopar-health  @ : Merely wanna comment that you have a ver
Merely wanna comment that you have a very decent site, I enjoy the pattern it actually stands out.  

7 Mar 2015 @ 19:00 by jerryvest : Thanks for your
comment and for visiting my webpage when you can. http://jerr  

Your Name:
Your URL: (or email)
For verification, please type the word you see on the left:

Other entries in
25 Jul 2016 @ 13:48: Injured Warrior and Partner-Recover with Health Services
16 Jun 2016 @ 13:45: Beware of Psychiatric Medicine and Becoming a Patient for Life
5 Apr 2016 @ 18:42: Sharing Life as Integrative Health Practitioner
20 Mar 2016 @ 11:59: Missing Leadership in America
7 Mar 2016 @ 08:12: 12 or More Discussion Groups sharing Reseach
3 Feb 2016 @ 21:39: Organize Supportive Teams and Join with Us Serving Vets
22 Jan 2016 @ 14:44: Served as Founder and CEO, Chartiers Center-My Story
11 Jan 2016 @ 17:09: Learning to Discover and Develop Awareness
5 Jan 2016 @ 17:46: Beware of Scammers in Social Networks-Got Me!!!
11 Dec 2015 @ 18:01: Giving Everything a Name is Nature of Education

[< Back] [Gerald Vest] [PermaLink]?