Today is the second day of the AVAW retreat. Made it to Denver last night and am excited to meet some new people and make our way through planning the new direction that the organization is heading. Follow the blog and I will be updating it soon.
The retreat went great, and we were able to come together and hash out a vast majority of the goals of the newly formed AVAW group. Walking away from Saturday we had the main goals set forth to draft a name change statement to be given to the board of directors at the national convention in Baltimore later next month. Veterans who served in Afghanistan on the ground as well as support came from each side of the country to meet, most for the first time, each other and a member of Afghans for Peace based out Canada.
Sunday we met at the organizers house to share breakfast and a Skype call to Afghanistan to speak with the Afghanistan Peace Volunteers. After the call we closed the weekend by spending a few hours sharing our stories and listening to each other in the safe space that we had created. Sharing stories of the carnage seen overseas at the hands of Americans as well as reflection that this day was the 11th anniversary of the first bombs dropped on Afghanistan. After lunch and some time around the fire we decided it was time to head back to the real world and try to continue the healing we had started over the weekend. We packed up and started our 4 hour drive home.
All in all we were able to accomplish a great feet and meet some new friends all the while helping each other to realize that we are not alone.