Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation Awards Mental Health Grants of Nearly $3 Million to Support Returning Veterans
Bristol-Myers SquibbFrederick J. Egenolf, 609-252-4875
Soldiers returning home after serving in Iraq or Afghanistan sometimes find that their greatest battle still lies ahead. Military deployments can trigger mental health problems such as depression, post-traumatic stress and substance abuse. Of nearly 2 million service personnel deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, as many as 300,000 may be in need of mental health services.
The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation – through its initiative – has supported innovative initiatives to address the mental health needs of our returning veterans since the program was launched in 2011. Today, the Foundation announced six additional grants totaling nearly $3 million.
“Returning veterans are eager to get on with their lives and build a better future for themselves and their families,” says John Damonti, president, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation. “But many face emotional and physical health challenges that can have serious consequences if they are not addressed. Through the Foundation’s initiative, we are creating sustainable community-based support systems and helping to improve the quality of care for our veterans.”
Like its other global initiatives to reduce health disparities and improve health outcomes, the Foundation’s initiative leverages public and private sector partners in the community and outside the clinic to increase disease awareness, educate patients about effective self-management of their disease, reduce stigma and provide emotional support.
New partners receiving Foundation grants include:
In addition to the four partners announced above, the Foundation announced two additional grants related to Vets Prevail, an innovative new online resource for veterans to help ease post-deployment readjustment to civilian life. Vets Prevail was developed through a collaboration of mental health researchers and clinicians at top universities and hospitals with the backing of the National Science Foundation and the McCormick Foundation. The new partners and programs include:
The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation is working with a number of other public and private partners, including Suicide Prevention International, Mental Health Association in New York State, MDRC, Massachusetts General Hospital and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill as part the Mental Health & Well-Being initiative.
“We are proud to help support our vets, who have sacrificed so much for our nation,” says Catharine Grimes, director, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation. “Through the grant program, we provide funding for a wide range of initiatives in support of veterans and their families, including members of the National Guard and Reservists. While the funding for each initiative is limited to one, two or three years, each is structured to provide sustainable and ongoing support for our veterans. In addition, project findings and experiences will be widely shared with other public and private institutions and community-based organizations through published results, conferences, symposia, white papers and online presentations.”
The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation is an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization whose mission is to reduce health disparities and improve health outcomes around the world for patients disproportionately affected by serious diseases. For more information about the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, please visit or follow us on Twitter at .