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PAIRS VA Marriage Retreats Helping Veteran Couples Restore Love, Intimacy, Trust

Ralph and Michelle Lynn

Ralph and Michelle Lynn’s marriage was floundering until, at Michelle’s urging, they attended a PAIRS VA marriage retreat three years ago at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center in Augusta, Georgia. Now things are different.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is trying a new path when it comes to caring for and healing the Nation’s wounded Veterans.

Now, in addition to repairing their damaged bodies and minds, VA is attempting to go one step further and repair their crumbling marriages.

PAIRS VA Marriage Retreats that began at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center in Augusta, Georgia in 2009 are today helping thousands of Veteran families throughout the United States.

The Damage Done

“Research shows that 70 percent of our combat Veterans are experiencing marital problems,” said VA Chaplain Ron Craddock. “Twenty percent of them decide to divorce before they even return from theatre. This is staggering. The toll on the individual Veteran is staggering. The toll on his family is staggering.”

That’s why Craddock and another VA Chaplain, Ed Waldrop, together with the nonprofit PAIRS Foundation, launched VA’s very first marriage retreat three years ago at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center in Augusta, Ga. The retreats are conducted by VA chaplains, social workers, psychologists, and counselors who have been certified by PAIRS Foundation as instructors for teaching better communication skills, relationship skills, and emotional literacy skills to couples. The VA Marriage Retreats are based on the PAIRS Essentials curriculum.

Learn more at


PAIRS For Military and Veteran Couples

PAIRS VA Marriage Retreats for Visually-Impaired Veterans

I Am ME: Chaplain Sue Cross

I Am ME: Chaplain Dick Millspaugh

VA Marriage Retreats

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Categorised in: American Life, Military Families, News

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February 2012
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