I am pleased to announce that art displays created by 10 women Veterans will be featured at VA medical facilities across the country in March during Women’s History Month.
In addition to Women’s History Month, March marks a significant milestone for women Veterans, as it is also the 100-year anniversary of the women officially enlisting in the regular U.S. military with full military rank and equal pay. Women Veterans often report feeling unrecognized and underappreciated; this exciting initiative will address that concern by increasing awareness of women as Veterans among VA health care providers and other staff, raising male Veteran patients’ awareness of the service and sacrifice of their women peers, and helping women feel more welcome by seeing their experiences as Veterans visibly reflected in images by and of other women when they enter a VA facility.
VA’s Center for Women Veterans partnered on this project with Veteran Artist Program, a nonprofit dedicated to fostering and promoting Veteran artists. The call for submissions resulted in nearly 400 pieces of art being sent in from more than 100 women Veterans around the country. The Veteran Artist Program will now select 10 works to be featured on storyboards, each of which will include an image of the work of art, photos of the women in and out of uniform, and a brief biography.
The following VA locations have been chosen to host the exhibit of the ten storyboards: Beckley VA Medical Center, Beckley, West Virginia; W. G. (Bill) Hefner VA Medical Center, Salisbury, North Carolina; Atlanta VA Medical Center, Atlanta, Georgia; James H. Quillen VA Medical Center, Mountain Home, Tennessee; VA Eastern Kansas Health Care System, in Topeka and Leavenworth, Kansas; Jesse Brown VA Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois ; Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System, New Orleans, Louisiana; Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center, Houston, Texas; Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center, Spokane, Washington; and VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System, Las Vegas, Nevada. The locations are also planning various events to increase awareness of the exhibits – stay tuned for more information as details become available.
Please join me in congratulating the locations that have been selected and check back on the Center for Women Veterans website soon for the upcoming announcement of which artists have been selected!