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'Show Us Your 22' to end veteran suicide

Campaign raises awareness by utilizing the number 22

The United States flag carried in a memorial position by 22 volunteers. Banner carried by Rod and Linda Wittmier. Photo credit: National Alliance to End Veteran Suicide

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The National Alliance to End Veteran Suicide (NA2EVS) has established the "Show Us Your 22" campaign. Twenty-two veterans per day take their own lives. The concept of the campaign is to increase awareness of this issue.

NA2EVS requests that everyone in the community join the campaign.  According to Rod Wittmier, NA2EVS founder, "No one can do everything but everyone can do something, and that's the point of "Show Us Your 22."  The alliance recognizes that not everyone has time or money to contribute in a big way but that people can take part in little ways that can make a huge difference.  Social media campaigns can have a huge impact on an organization by bringing awareness to their cause as well as increased resources such as volunteers and donations.

Here are some actions you can take to bring awareness to this issue utilizing the number 22:

  • Gather your friends and post photos with the number 22
  • Thank 22 veterans for their service this week
  • Send 22 emails to raise awareness; go to for facts and ideas
  • Share and their Facebook page with 22 friends
  • Volunteer 22 hours with a veteran's organization
  • Run, bike or walk 22 miles
  • Do 22 pushups or other exercise 22 times
  • Donate $22 a month to NA2EVS
  • Help NA2EVS find 22 national sponsors
  • Find 22 other people to participate in the challenge

"Show Us Your 22" is a community-based social media challenge and you are asked to post a photo of your 22 on NA2EVS' Facebook page. Include the hashtag #ShowUSYour22.

Wittmier is very passionate about ending veteran suicide, and that is the long-term goal of NA2EVS.  The alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)3 that is totally volunteer driven.  The volunteers come from all walks of life.  "You do not need to be a veteran to make a difference.  We are a collaboration of business leaders, individuals and organizations that welcome anyone with a warm heart for our veterans and their families to join us," he said.

"Everyone has a different expression of their gratitude for the men and women that have served our nation.  We ask that you show us your expression of the number 22 as some positive action.  You could do push-ups, or donate, or volunteer by sharing or emailing," said Wittmier.  He encourages those who want to help to find what your something will be, who will you share the experience with, and then be contagious. Wittmier expressed his gratitude to those who would help, "On behalf of the servicemembers and veterans whose lives we will save together, thank you! We are driven by our focus areas and believe that one veteran suicide is way too much!"

National Alliance to End Veteran Suicide, P.O. Box 1564, Buckley, WA  98321, 253.256.2015, 

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