I am so excited to be working with the Green Vets of South Florida.  As the son of a Disabled veteran,  I understand what Vets have go through and we are going to give them every opportunity to get hands on experience during project Jensen Beach Green.

usgbc-gv-1488x572-81OVERVIEW OF USGBC’S GREEN VETERANS PROGRAM

The USGBC Green Veterans program was founded by the South Florida Chapter in 2013 by a disabled combat Veteran and a long-standing USGBC (civilian) volunteer. The Chapter’s Green Veterans committee quickly grew to almost a dozen volunteers who were both new to the USGBC community and had little prior awareness of green building or sustainability.

Local programs are diverse and productive. Amongst other topics and activities, the Green Veterans have discussed the realities of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and the role of therapeutic gardens and building design on stress reduction and PTSD treatment. They have collaborated with local nonprofits to collect furniture for Veterans, and also pulled together a team to repair a Veteran’s home. They have gathered socially to grow our ranks and discuss our mission.

More recently, the Green Veterans Group have led conversations with other local Veterans organizations to create a green-lightbulb1Sustainability Boot Camp. The USGBC South Florida Chapter and local educational institutions are partnering to hold training classes for the LEED Green Associate exam, along with HERS, Resnet and BPI training. All exam fees are covered for Veterans by the GI Bill. From there, the Green Veterans are partnering with non-profits like Rebuilding Together and Habitat for Humanity to provide on-the-job experience for those recently trained Vets. Once complete with the training and OJT, Green Veterans then is partnering with United Way’s Mission United initiative and the Green Collar Vets organization to provide permanent jobs and bring the Veterans into the green building workforce.

The Green Veterans program has expanded into other USGBC Chapters across the USA. Program and start-up tools have been created to make the program replicable across the network of Chapters. In addition, the Green Veterans leadership are committed to the program’s success in each Chapter and are available assist Chapters’ formative Green Veterans efforts.

Please contact Edel Travieso (chair@greenvets.org or 561-351-0178) or Jonathan Burgess (usgbc@greenvets.org or 401-465-8250) for additional information.