Ecological Strengths-Based Perspective To Veterans Experience of Reintegration Into Civilian Life

Kranke D, Gin J, Saia R, Heslin K, Dobalian A. Military Behavioral Health. 2016, VOL. 4, NO. 1, 75–81 



Reintegration to civilian life continues to be challenging for many veterans despite numerous

programs that were developed to assist with this process. Emerging literature suggests veteran

engagement in volunteer organizations promotes their reintegration. Our exploratory study applies

an ecological strengths-based framework to enhance our knowledge of veteran volunteerism and

reintegration in the context of a disaster relief organization: Team Rubicon. Findings suggest

ecological factors, such as re-creating a familiar culture of camaraderie among veterans and

building upon individual strengths that allow veterans to apply their specialized skills, helped instill

feelings of connectedness and contribution to their respective civilian communities.


KEYWORDS: Reintegration; veterans; qualitative methods; volunteerism; Team Rubicon; disasters; ecological; strengths perspective