Acupuncturists Without Borders -  Hurricane Katrina Relief Effort
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12/12/05

To Whom It May Concern

It with a great deal of indebtedness that I say “Thank you” to Acupuncturists Without Borders (AWB). I am a consultant with the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration or SAMHSA, an agency of Health and Human Services (HHS). In this capacity, I was sent to develop a Wellness Center in the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), at the Hyatt Hotel in New Orleans. The EOC is the Command Center run by the City of New Orleans wherin sits each member of the city responsible for its rebuilding. This Wellness Center idea was born out of a request by First Responders who felt a need for mental health support for themselves but who were often unwilling to seek direct counseling or other assistance. When AWB was asked to provide service at the EOC, First Responders began to open up to the wisdom of seeking help for themselves. We found that AWB was a perfect therapeutic/medical bridge around which First Responders could begin the work of establishing a personal health/wellness plan.

Since the collaboration with AWB as a Wellness Center partner, over 300 First Responders and Direct Service responders have been repeat clients who have attested to positive health results. Wellness profiles, stress management instruments, and discussions have verified a reduction in stress and an awareness of a more positive life balance.

I attest to the efficacy of AWB’s services and I welcome our continued relationship in the name of the First Responders of New Orleans and the citizens for whom they labored.

Sincerely,

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