WXXI AM News

Local veterans help each other ease back into civilian life

Nov 10, 2017

As Veterans Day approaches, Compeer Rochester is reminding local veterans that a program it offers can help them ease back into civilian life.

CompeerCORPS has been around for five years.  It brings veterans together for group and community activities with the ultimate goal of establishing one-to-one connections.  Program manager Mike Buckpitt, who is a U.S. Army veteran himself, says it's all about the personal connections.

"A lot of times it's hard for us to understand what are we missing out of our lives that was there before that's making this transition a little bit more difficult. Really, it's that comraderie ....being around people like us."

CompeerCORPS also offers cooking and painting classes and a program where veterans drive each other to appointments.                            

"We had a veteran who came to our golf group and said, 'You know, Mike, this is the platoon in civilian life I was looking for. It's that informal therapy that I'm looking for because I don't really want to go to a formal therapist ...that doesn't help me, but this does really well for me.' "

More than 250 local veterans are currently participating. For more information, call (585) 546-8280 ext. 207.