Helping Care for Our Nation’s Veterans: VNL’s Partnership with Forward Flag

We are proud to announce our partnership with Forward Flag, a 501c3 charity organization founded in 2013. Headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Rogersville, Tennessee, Forward Flag aims to prevent veteran suicide by raising awareness and offering preventative measures. VNL’s Senior Project Manager, Kaley Bachinski, traveled to Forward Flag’s Albuquerque headquarters and met with their team to demonstrate how Visible Network Labs’ PARTNERme tool can aid them in their mission to help our nation’s veterans. 

Mission: Zero

Every day, an average of 20 veterans end their own lives. In 2019, 6,621 veterans committed suicide. These are sobering statistics, indicating that even those who display outsized strength and courage can be suffering greatly underneath it all. 

Founded by Vietnam Veterans Roger Pipkins and John McGill and staffed by veterans, the folks at Forward Flag have a personal understanding of what our military men and women may be going through: from transitioning back to civilian life, losing of a sense of purpose, dealing with PTSD, to isolation and loneliness, there are a multitude of challenges facing veterans. Forward Flag pledges to never stop their mission until the average daily number of veterans who commit suicide is zero. 

How Can PARTNERme Help?

A place for veterans to relax in the Forward Flag facility.

From connecting veterans with resources, helping them find other veterans with similar interests, providing access to fitness training, or just simply giving them a place to hang out and watch a game, Forward Flag is doing necessary work that requires them to know and understand a veteran’s needs and interests, as well as their network. No veteran or their family will ever be asked for money for any services that they provide.

Kaley and Mr. Skibyak.

To demonstrate our PARTNERme tool, Kaley worked with Ted Skibyak, a U.S. Army veteran of 37 years (rising to the rank of E-9), who also serves as Forward Flag’s Certified Peer Support Worker, and Burnell Reliford, Forward Flag’s Veteran Liaison.  Kaley walked them through PARTNERme and helped them determine how PARTNERme and VNL could assist in their crucial mission. When speaking about his impressions of using PARTNERme, Mr. Reliford said, “Having to spend countless hours researching resources is not only painful, it’s a waste of time and money. PARTNERme streamlined our intake process with a very customizable questionnaire that allows us to be more efficient and effective for our beneficiaries which overall allows us to serve our community better.”

Always Forward, Never Retreat

Mr. Skibyak and Mr. Reliford in front of the Coffee Bunker, which was donated by a veteran.

We at Visible Network Labs are proud to support all branches of our Nation’s military, and are especially proud to provide our tools to organizations like Forward Flag. We thank them for their service, both at home and abroad. We greatly appreciate them being a warm host to Kaley, and look forward to continuing to assist their mission.

Find out more information about Forward Flag’s initiatives and how to donate on their website HERE!

Be sure to stay tuned to our Visible Us Blog for more product updates and VNL Team content!

About the Author: Will Jacobson

Will Jacobson is the Business Development Specialist on VNL’s Marketing and Communications Team. Originally from New York City, Will loves living in Colorado and all the outdoor life it has to offer. He’s also a pretty big foodie!

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