43..Homeless Women Veterans Programs

While at OSD Nashville I met some interesting women. They were sitting at a table where there were few in attendence. They were representing the Womens Veterans Network which operates inside the VA.

Mary Ann Woodward-Smith manages the Tennessee Valleys VA Health Care System. MaryAnn is a very impressive woman who I met and from talking to her has created a very impressive network inside this TN VA. In talking with the women that work with her she has created a loyal following through success. To me at least, if you have loyal followers that speak highly of you and work along with you that is total success. Mary Ann speaks to all women veterans that enter the VA hospital regardless if they are homeless or not. If she cannot speak with them, one of her assistants does. She has created a sisterhood network that helps all women veterans with their VA claims, as we all know this can be a lengthy process to keep one from giving up. They promote and support women veterans since there is a much smaller number of them than their male counter parts. They have beds for homeless women veterans! I remarked to MaryAnn I wished I was a woman veteran after hearing all of this! I wished the VA’s everywhere were as dedicated to all their patients as Mary Ann is dedicated to hers. Mary Ann is a tribute to the VA System.

I also met the Women Veterans of America at the same table. These women volunteer to help other women veterans and are set up the same as the American Legions, and VFW’s except they are not forced to join the auxillary because they are women. They do a lot of good for women veterans. You may contact the TN chapter at wvachapter20@aol.com . These are some incredibly dedicated women veterans.

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