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VA Claims Insider contributes $25,000 to help troops build spiritual and physical fitness through outdoor adventure

VACI CEO Brian Reese and Soul Survivor Outdoor founder Rick Wolf announce collaborative programs connecting military service members with nature—and each other

AUSTIN, TEXAS, UNITED STATES, May 4, 2022 / -- VA Claims Insider contributes $25,000 to Soul Survivor Outdoor to help active-duty troops build spiritual and physical fitness through outdoor adventure

VA Claims Insider (VACI) CEO Brian Reese and Soul Survivor Outdoor founder Rick Wolf today announced collaboration on programs to connect military service members with nature—and one another.

VA Claims Insider continued its support of Soul Survivor Outdoor—a faith-based outdoor adventure company that exclusively serves the active duty military community—with a $25,000 donation.

SSO is addressing spiritual fitness and resiliency through outdoor adventure with active duty military across the country.

Resonating deeply with SSO’s vision, VA Claims Insider CEO Brian Reese became a donor and supporter in 2021. The two companies share a mission of supporting and empowering those who serve our country.

Reese was introduced to SSO founder Rick Wolf through a VACI veteran coach, lso a Soul Survivor Team member.

Wolf served nearly 30 years in the Marine Corps, including as OIC of the Wounded Warrior Detachment at Twentynine Palms, CA. That fueled his passion to help those currently on active duty be as physically, mentally and spiritually fit as possible.

He started SSO in 2014 with this vision, partnering with military leaders to cultivate more resilient service members.

Wolf notes, “We’re excited that VACI continues to be a strong supporter of our mission of serving active duty service members through outdoor adventure. The only way we function is through donations from individuals and corporations such as VACI. It’s truly through their generosity that we’re able to impact service members' lives.”

Wolf explained that this latest contribution “helped us to go into the Fort Campbell, Kentucky, area and into Coast Guard bases on the east coast. That funding allowed us to expand into three more states this year than planned.”

The expansion allowed about 400 more service members to participate in SSO programs. SSO offers all its spiritual fitness and outdoor programs free to military service members.

Veteran mental health is a passion for both founders. By supporting SSO, “our goal is to reach them before they’re in crisis.”

“We know from studies both secular and faith-based that when people get out into nature, it reduces stress and connects them on a soul level as well as a team level. It opens them up to the large world and helps them see they were put here for a reason,” said Wolf.

Studies show that outdoor recreational activity experiences improve the psychological wellbeing of military with PTSD. For example, the Sierra Club and researchers at the University of Utah have published a study linking exposure to nature and improvements to military mental health. These results align with similar research among non-military populations.

“Mental health challenges are epidemic among both active-duty service members and veterans,” said Reese, an Air Force service-disabled veteran who deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. “The pandemic has only heightened mental health issues and the need for innovative programs that heal our military.”

Reese adds, “When we saw the action and passion behind Soul Survivors’ mission, we knew it was a great fit for collaboration and complementary to our own mission. We wanted to help them continue their good work.”


About Soul Survivor Outdoor
Soul Survivor Outdoor is a faith-based nonprofit center offering outdoor adventure to active-duty military. More information on Soul Survivor Outdoor is available here.

About VA Claims Insider
VA Claims Insider is an education-based coaching/consulting company for disabled veterans exploring eligibility for increased VA disability benefits. VACI’s mission is “Veterans helping veterans access education-based resources to get the VA disability rating and compensation they deserve.” The company has helped over 15,000 veterans win their claims and increase their ratings.

(VA Claims Insider, LLC is not an accredited agent, VSO, attorney, or entity recognized by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and is not affiliated with the VA in any way. VA Claims Insider, LLC does not assist veterans with the preparation, presentation, and prosecution of VA disability claims for VA benefits. Veterans prepare and file their own claim or work with an accredited representative, many of which offer services for free.)

Trinidad Aguirre
VA Claims Insider
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