Operation Deep Dive communities are all now actively engaged in spreading the word about the study and conducting outreach to interview loved ones who have lost a veteran to suicide from 2019 forward. Amanda Nadel and Chessa Emmons, Charleston and Phoenix’s Community Research Assistants respectively, share in this blog update about their process for getting the word out to their community.
Charleston South Carolina Update:
“The Coastal SC Community is in a crucial position of the research process for Operation Deep Dive. Research assistant, Amanda Nadel, has begun to reach out to local veteran organizations and community partners to spread the word that we are currently looking for interested interviewee participants to contact us. We have begun to reach out to the local Coastal SC community to hand out informational flyers and contact information for our research team. We are communing and coming up with the most appropriate and sensitive ways to seek out surviving loved ones who would like to assist in the research and thereby hopefully improving the lives of other Veterans and their families.
Coastal SC has also started to work closely with the county coroners to hopefully coordinate interviews with surviving family members as we enter in the next phase of the research. Coastal SC coroners have expressed that they are on-board with the research initiative. Moving forward, we will be working more closely with each of the coroners to find the best way to get referrals and how to ensure communication and collaboration as a Community Action Team. We will be reviewing our approach to communication and meetings and trying to find the best way to make the most of the team’s time and resources to move the research initiative forward.” – Amanda Nadel
Phoenix Arizona Update:
“The Phoenix Community has been working closely with the University of Alabama and the Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner (ME) to identify the best mode of partnership for sharing the Operation Deep Dive project information with Next of Kin for deceased veterans who have died from suicide or self-harm. In addition to the Office of the ME, community partners, such as the Phoenix VA Health Care System, the Arizona Department of Veteran Services and the Arizona Coalition for Military Families, have been hard at work distributing information through a multitude of community channels to ensure maximum reach of the Operation Deep Dive project efforts. Outreach to local community funeral associations is also helping to facilitate new relationships and involvement in the project. All in all, positive progress is afoot!” – Chessa Emmons