Talking Service

Talking Service is discussion-based program for military veterans, active military personnel, their family members, and other citizens interested in the experience of war, military service, and especially the challenges of making the transition back into civilian life.

Talking Service is a discussion-based program for military veterans, active military personnel, military family members, and other citizens interested in the experience of war, military service, and the challenges of making the transition back into civilian life.

WHAT WE DO

We provide opportunities for military veterans to come together with their peers and others interested in their concerns to discover ways of reflecting on their lives and their time serving our country.

HOW WE DO IT

Our trained partners across the United States, who are skilled facilitators, hold discussion groups for 12 to 15 individuals centered around the anthology Standing Down: From Warrior to Civilian, a collection of short, powerful readings about military service written by service members. Through the discussions, our participants find their voices to tell their own stories and express their own insights in ways that satisfy the basic human need to communicate meaningfully with others. More importantly, they reflect on their service experience and through conversation, begin the transition back to civilian life.

Since 2016, we have worked with numerous agencies that provide services for our veterans, and we have trained over 180 facilitators nationwide.

Talking Service is supported by generous grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the CME Group.

[Talking Service] is an important program that served veterans in meaningful ways, offering them opportunities to engage in deep conversations through the lenses of literature. The anthology and discussions provoked veterans to engage, by sharing their thoughts and perspectives about their experiences.

K. Michelle Quisenberry
Senior Program Officer
New Mexico Humanities Council

Standing Down

Standing Down: From Warrior to Civilian is essential reading for anyone interested in reflecting on war and military service. The book’s 44 selections—which include short stories, memoirs, essays, poems, and journalism—are powerful works of literature that give voice to many of the authors’ own experiences of military life. Designed to prompt lively conversation, the selections in Standing Down are the focus of all Talking Service discussion programs.

Whether or not you are participating in a Talking Service group, Standing Down will provide you with many hours of stimulating reading.

Watch US Senator Dick Durbin talk about Standing Down