2 July 2021 MDVA News and Announcements

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Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs

News and Announcements  -  July 2, 2021


MDVA Welcomes Two Student Staff Members for the Summer

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MDVA has help this summer from two college students who will be working on projects with the Outreach & Advocacy Program.

Jessica Nguyen applied to the Maryland Governor's Summer Internship Program and was selected to work with MDVA.  Jessica will be researching Women Veterans Programs across the country to help prepare for the newly established MDVA Women Veterans/Inclusion Program.

Nicole Liszewski, who grew up in a military family applied directly to MDVA.  Nicole's double majors in Marketing and Business Intelligence & Analytics are being put to good use, as she helps review and make recommendations for MDVA's social media platforms. Stay tuned - Instagram is coming soon.

We hope you will join us in welcoming Jessica and Nicole as they work with us to support Maryland Veterans.

Jessica and Nicole photos

             Jessica Nguyen: Biography                             Nicole Liszewski: Biography

MDVA Website

Delegate Saab photo

Maryland Delegate Sid Saab (left), presents a Citizenship Citation to Denise Nooe, MDVA Deputy Director of Outreach for her service to veterans.  To the right of Denise in the photo are MDVA Secretary George Owings and Deputy Secretary Robert Finn.

Yesim Karaman photo

Denise also received a Citation from Governor Hogan, presented by Yasim Karaman, Policy Advisor to the Governor.

In this photo from left to right: Lori Pinson, MDVA Senior Procurement Officer, Katie Sonntag, Executive Assistant to the Secretary, Denise Nooe, Yasim Karaman and MDVA Secretary George Owings.

State Partner News

Before It's Too Late Logo

Before It’s Too Late is the statewide effort to bring awareness to the rapid escalation of the heroin, opioid, and fentanyl crisis in Maryland and to mobilize all available resources for effective prevention, treatment, and recovery – before it’s too late. 

For More Information


Last week, Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford launched the Maryland Stop Overdose Strategy (Maryland SOS), a multifaceted interdisciplinary campaign to reduce overdose deaths and support local prevention, enforcement, and treatment of individuals experiencing substance use disorders.

First Lady Yumi Hogan

Maryland's First Lady Yumi Hogan attends a ceremony marking the 71st anniversary of the Korean War.

Photo Credit: Executive Office of the Governor  More Photos

Governor's Office of Small, Minority and Women Business Affairs Upcoming Events

Mark Your Calendar:

Stay connected to the many opportunities for training, networking, and business development taking place across Maryland and on virtual platforms. Here is a highlight of some of the events coming up this month. 

07/07/2021 - Getting a Business Loan
07/09/2021 - Setting up a New Business Entity
07/13/2021 - Franchising: An Option for Your Business Venture
07/21/2021 - Private Sector Integration Program Summit 2021
07/22/2021 - Financial Basics for New Small Businesses
07/27/2021 - Digital Marketing
07/27/2021 - Prime Contracting in the Small Business Reserve (SBR) Program

Check out our full listing of small business events
online at goMDsmallbiz.maryland.gov.

Federal Partner News

Information from VA Maryland Health Care System

VA Logo1

Dear VA Maryland Health Care System E-News Subscriber:

On May 20th, Governor Larry Hogan announced the launch of the $2 Million VaxCash Promotion to thank Marylanders for getting vaccinated and to provide an incentive to encourage new vaccinations. The promotion is awarding $2 million in cash prizes to a total of 41 Maryland residents who have been vaccinated. The daily drawings began on May 25 and will continue through July 4, with the name of one individual randomly drawn each day to win a $40,000 prize. The $2 Million VaxCash Promotion will end on July 4 when a final drawing will award one winner a grand prize of $400,000.

Individuals vaccinated by the VA Maryland Health Care System were not originally included in the Maryland Department of Health Immunization Information System, so they were previously not eligible for the VaxCash drawings. The good news is that VA has since worked with the state to establish a process for sharing immunization information with the Maryland Department of Health. This means that Veterans who reside in Maryland and were vaccinated by the VA Maryland Health Care System or any VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic located in the state of Maryland will now be included in the VaxCash drawings.

If you have not yet received your vaccination, it is not too late to protect yourself and your family from COVID-19. All of the COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing you from getting very sick, needing to be hospitalized, and they are highly effective at preventing death. Getting vaccinated will also protect those your love because you are much less likely to pass COVID-19 to others. To schedule an appointment to receive your COVID-19 vaccination, call 410-605-7333 Monday through Friday between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. 


VA Maryland Health Care System

Federal News

Finding a Way to be Part of the Solution in the fight against PTSD & Veteran Suicide

Five Questions to ask before going back to school

Live Whole Health #76: Are you sitting down?

Live Whole Health #77: Brain Break - Breathing and movement to calm the mind

National 9/11 Veterans Art Competition now accepting submissions

The True Cost of War, Marine Battles Cancer and Shares her Story

VA Greenhouse Initiative

American Red Cross facing severe blood shortage 

The Military Women's Memorial will host a fundraiser on the 4th of July. Read More Here

July 25th is National Hire a Veteran Day, MilitaryBenefits.info article

Supporting Veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
this Independence Day

On July 4th, our Nation will commemorate 245 years since the second Continental Congress declared that the 13 American colonies were no longer subject to the monarch of Britain, King George III, and were now free and independent states.

Celebrating Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbeques, and large crowds. While these activities are fun, Veterans, especially combat Veterans living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), may need support to manage potential triggers.

The Department of Veterans Affairs National Center for PTSD can help with understanding PTSD and options for treatment. In addition, the center can help caregivers of Veterans, friends, and family find the support they need for themselves.

Visit the National Center for PTSD’s website for more information that can help you and the Veteran for whom you provide care during the Fourth of July holiday, as well as every day throughout the year: https://www.ptsd.va.gov/index.asp. Convenient resources like VA apps offer support and guidance for both IOS and Android Devices.

May your Fourth of July be filled with cheer, blessings, and, most importantly, pride. Happy Independence Day.

Very Respectfully,

Colleen M. Richardson, Psy.D
Executive Director, VA Caregiver Support Program
Clinical Psychologist

Community Partner News

For Your Information

The Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs does not endorse the organizations sponsoring these events, and we do not endorse the views they express or the products/services they offer.  The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of MDVA.  The information provided is intended for your general knowledge only, and serves solely as a MDVA community outreach effort.

Community News

Fields 4 Valor Farms is seeking donations.  The farm located in southern Maryland was highlighted in the last edition of the MDVA newsletter, because of the efforts of staff and volunteers to feed veterans experiencing food insecurity.  This week, the commercial walk-in cooler at the farm failed. Unable to cold store produce and eggs until delivery to veterans, Fields 4 Valor may have to stop operations.  Peter Scott, CEO and Founder is seeking donations to replace the walk-in cooler.  If you are interested in donating, or know of a replacement walk-in cooler available at little or no cost, please contact Pete directly: pete@fieldsforvalor.org

Project Opportunity has scheduled a fall class for Veteran Entrepreneurs on the Eastern Shore. Orientation Class is scheduled for August 18, 2021: Flier

A class in Baltimore City with the Orientation Class scheduled for August 19, 2021: Flier

A class in Southern Maryland with the Orientation Class scheduled for August 24, 2021: Flier

Voices of Vets is returning to in-person events:

Wednesday, September 1 - FREE CONCERT at Elks Camp Barrett in Annapolis
Monday, October 18 - VOICERAISER on Oct. 18th and 21st in Columbia, MD - more information coming soon

Baltimore Station is welcoming volunteers to return:

Volunteers are back at The Baltimore Station. On Friday, June 4, we had our first volunteer group, New DayUSA, back to serve dinner at our South Baltimore facility. Check out our story on WMAR2 News.
Interested in volunteering? Be sure to check out our website baltimorestation.org/volunteer for the volunteer schedule.
Baltimore Station has also scheduled at fundraising event at Bengies Drive-In Theatre on August 26th. Read More Here

Dog Tag Inc. Winter 2022 Fellowship Program:

Applications will open early July for the Winter 2022 Dog Tag Fellowship Program!

  • Program Dates: January 18 - May 27, 2022
  • Application Deadline: September 15, 2021

Visit our website for more information, eligibility requirements, and to apply.

Travis Manion FoundationRegistration is now open for the 2021 9/11 Heroes Run 5k race. Twenty years ago, the tragedy of September 11, 2001, changed our nation's way of life forever. In addition to honoring the lives lost on that day, the 9/11 Heroes Run pays tribute to thousands of veterans, active duty, and first responders who have stepped up to serve in the years since. Register

The Veteran EDGE Conference is what you need to open the door to growth and scaling. Syracuse University's Institute for Veterans and Military Families' premier entrepreneurship training event for growth-stage military-connected business owners gives you the tools, instruction, resources, and network you need to exceed your business goals. 

Community Calendar

July 10, 2021

Maryland National Guard Community Fair, Silver Spring

Introduction to Hero Dogs

July 14, 2021

Frederick County Veteran Recognition & Resource Day

July 15, 2021

JAVA - Day of Affirmation

July 17, 2021

VFW Veterans Resource Day, Morningside

July 21, 2021

Frederick County Veteran Recognition & Resource Day

July 28, 2012

Frederick County Veteran Recognition & Resource Day

August 7, 2021

Purple Heart Recognition & Veterans Resource Fair, Newburg

August 18, 2021

Project Opportunity Orientation Day, Salisbury

August 19, 2021

Project Opportunity Orientation Day, Baltimore

August 24, 2021

Project Opportunity Orientation Day, Waldorf

August 28, 2021

DAV Veterans Information & Benefits Clinic, Dundalk

Message for New Subscribers:

Is this your first edition of the MDVA newsletter?  If so, welcome!  You are receiving this newsletter because you signed up to receive it from our website or you gave permission to an MDVA program, the MD Motor Vehicle Administration or MD Department of Labor to receive information on VA benefits and resources.  We at MDVA respect your privacy and DO NOT share your email address.  We hope you enjoy receiving our bi-weekly newsletter and find it both educational and engaging.  If you have questions about our Department, our Programs, or your VA benefits, please visit veterans.maryland.gov or call 410-260-3838.