|Posted by moodhacker on March 17, 2018 at 10:20 PM|
Homer-for-veterans is the brainchild of Dartmouth College classics professor Roberta Stewart, who is now hoping for a grant that will allow her to expand the idea nationwide.
Stewart read some blog posts by U.S. service members fighting in Iraq in 2003. She recognized their graphic descriptions of war and the difficulties many faced readjusting to life after combat, and reached out to one veteran who appeared to be having a hard time.
“I said to him, ‘Homer can help you. Homer knows,'” Stewart said.
Stewart never heard back from the veteran she told about Homer, but the light bulb stayed on. A decade ago, she wrote to the Department for Veterans Affairs hospital in White River Junction, Vermont, suggesting the idea. Officials were skeptical at first, but she eventually won and started her first group.
Navy Cmdr. Amy Hunt, the operational support officer for the Naval Special Warfare Command in San Diego, hopes to set up programs for still-serving Navy Seals and overseas support personnel.
“Using Homer, because of the distance involved and also it’s great storytelling, is a way to break into those experiences,” Hunt said.
In its different guises at the locations where classes and discussions have been offered, veterans from World War II to those just home from Afghanistan have seen themselves in the struggles described by Homer.