Episode Eighteen - Sandy Bower

Often times when men and women come home from serving in the military they have no where to go, no job, and no way of getting their lives on track, Sandy Bower is giving those veterans a helping hand. She runs an organization called Vets Returning Home, a nonprofit and non-government funded organization dedicated to helping our veterans transition into stable lives.

The goal of Vets Returning Home is simple: to end chronic homelessness among veterans in our communities. The organization is a volunteer operated 11,000 square foot facility with 43 beds and commercial kitchen. It provides a stable and sober living environment to veterans in crisis. Onsite services include employment readiness training, aid with job placement, disability benefit connection, legal support and life skills training.

Sandy experienced homelessness herself at 14 and was a single mother at 15. She understood that she had to work harder to get ahead and raise her family than most would. In October of 2013, Sandy found herself well established, retired, and looking for a philanthropic cause to support, her research lead her to the knowledge of the plight of the veterans.  She purchased the old Red Cross building and opened up Vets Returning Home entirely funded from her retirement savings. Listen to her story and you will hear why she is a WCSX "Woman Who Rocks".

Vets returning home has a huge event coming up to help raise money. You can golf with a Detroit Tiger!

In the second half of the podcast Cyndy Schalter-Salsido from Turning Point Macomb and I discuss Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The month of June is PTSD awareness month. PTSD is a disorder that develops in some people who have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event. A study in 2016 stated that 22 veterans commit suicide daily and a large percentage of them suffer from post traumatic stress disorder. PTSD doesn't just affect veterans, it can take a toll on ANYONE who has gone through something traumatic.

What PTSD Is Really Like

"It may never be the same, but it can get better." Check out more awesome videos at BuzzFeedVideo! http://bit.ly/YTbuzzfeedvideo Learn more about mental health week - http://www.buzzfeed.com/bensmith/why-were-doing-mental-health-week#.vnAzxA7bY MUSIC What Was Once Shooting the Breeze Licensed via Warner Chappell Production Music Inc. Audio Network SFX provided by Audioblocks.

Cyndy and I also discuss the push to change the sex education curriculum in Michigan. A woman is campaigning  to amend the curriculum to mandate lessons on affirmative consent, or "yes means yes" policy. She claims the current lessons fail to inform children about recognizing situations of sexual and domestic violence.

If approved, House Bill 5734 would require schools to provide lessons about affirmative consent, or a "yes means yes" curriculum, during sex education. Key parts of the "yes means yes" curriculum are spelled out in the bill. Schools would have to provide lessons on "respectful and healthy dating relationships" and what affirmative consent is. The proposed legislation clarifies that consent does not mean lack of resistance, that silence isn't consent and that each person involved must voluntarily say yes. It also mandates teaching about the responsibility of bystanders.

(Cyndy Schalter-Salsido)


Domestic violence and sexual assault rob an individual of their sense of safety, power, and dignity. Turning Point provides emergency and support services to meet both the immediate and long-term needs of survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Turning Point strives to provide a safe non-judgmental place for survivors to explore their feelings and options, and regain control of their lives.
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