DETROIT — Detroit Tigers All-Star pitcher Justin Verlander joined the Detroit Tigers Foundation, an affiliate of Ilitch Charities, to announce a commitment of $1 million to launch an initiative called Wins for Warriors that will support the mental health and emotional well-being of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families in Detroit, Richmond, Va., and Norfolk, Va.
Growing up outside of Richmond, and pitching for Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Justin was surrounded by two of the largest military populations in the country. Reports indicate that as many as one in three Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who experience combat will eventually experience significant mental health challenges. Sadly, many don’t seek help because of the stigma associated with receiving mental health care. Justin expressed, “My vision is to help erase the stigma around veterans and their families that seek mental health services and join together to provide the support they need.”
Wins for Warriors is devoted to sustaining successful programs that work with veterans and their families along the process for recovery because one size does not fit all. Over the next year, funds will be distributed to two best-in-class national organizations that have the expertise to have a long-term impact on this population in the target markets.
“The Detroit Tigers organization commends Justin for the launch of his Wins for Warriors program and his overall dedication to the veterans and their families in Detroit, Norfolk and Richmond,” David Dombrowski, Tigers president, CEO and general manager, said. “Justin’s new initiative is another example of his commitment to helping those veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country.”