For more than 13 years, Colton Amster has owned Redline Restorations, an automotive restoration business in Bridgeport, Connecticut. When he is not overseeing activities at Redline Restorations, Colton Amster spends time supporting charitable organizations like the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP).
The Wounded Warrior Project recently released findings from the 2016 Annual Warrior Survey. The information gathered from the Annual Warrior Survey allows WWP to modify existing programs and introduce new services to best support the WWP network of wounded veterans and their families. The survey also allows organization leaders to appreciate both the difficulties wounded warriors face upon returning home from service, as well as the progress individuals have made in recent years.
More than one in four warriors responding to the 2016 survey reported that finding effective mental health services in their community to be a challenge. Common mental health disorders faced by injured warriors include post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and traumatic brain injury (TBI). WWP works closely with veteran medical facilities throughout the nation to improve mental health services, while also promoting mental health awareness to the public and government officials.
On the more positive end of the spectrum, the survey found that the percentage of veterans accessing their disability benefits rose from 79 percent in 2015 to 85 percent in 2016. This number translated to more than 14,000 WWP veterans filing for disability in 2015, or about $71 million in benefits. The survey also found that 30 percent of wounded warriors had achieved a bachelor’s degree or higher, up from 27 percent the previous year.