By COL Rice, AW2 Director
Many Americans enjoy the New Year’s Day holiday because of the parties, fireworks, college football bowl games, and many other festivities that take place around the country. While I also take pleasure in many of these festivities, what I really enjoy is that many Americans will be evaluating their own lives and making plans to take action during the year ahead.
New Year’s resolutions can be common improvements, such as losing weight, spending more time with Family, reducing debt, or traveling more. More importantly, many will make resolutions to take values more seriously; serving others by being more charitable or volunteering more time to community organizations.
In the U.S. Army, the concept of constantly evaluating one’s self and making plans and commitments for self-improvement is a way of life. From taking the oath to serve our country with loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity, and personal courage to sweating it out daily to improve physical fitness scores — Soldiers make resolutions for improvement every day. As the AW2 Director, I have witnessed first-hand how our AW2 Soldiers and Veterans keep this commitment of constant self-improvement by focusing on their abilities rather than their “disabilities.”
In the past year, we have witnessed AW2 Soldiers and Veterans make commitments to go back to school to get a college degree, to participate in sporting competitions and outdoor recreations, to return to the Army, and to transition to productive civilian lives.
In 2009, the number of wounded warriors that AW2 supports grew 50 percent from 4,000 to nearly 6,000 Soldiers and Veterans, and our AW2 Advocates and staff continued to provide excellent personalized support. The reason for this is simple: our AW2 Advocates and staff make a resolution every day to support AW2 Soldiers, Veterans, and their Families.
In 2010, I know that all members of the AW2 community will once again make a resolution to achieve life goals or to improve the lives of those around them. If you are making a resolution or goal for 2010, please share them with AW2 by posting a comment on this blog so that others may become inspired to set their own goals for the year.
COL Jim Rice
Director, U.S. Army Wounded Warrior Program