THE BRIDGE PROJECT
About The Bridge Project
Every Memorial Day weekend, the Mindful Memorial Day Foundation (MMDF) partners with Armor Down to host Mindful Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery. This year, our ambitious goal is to recruit 1,000 volunteers to honor each of the almost 1,000 soldiers who have died in theater since 9/11 and are buried at Arlington. We want to honor them with a graveside mindful moment of gratitude.
This recruitment effort is The Bridge Project, and our main objective is to bring together healers and warriors around the shared practice of mindfulness.
Why do we call it The Bridge Project?
To the west of the Lincoln Memorial, the graceful Arlington Memorial Bridge spans the Potomac River, connecting Washington, D.C. with Arlington, Virginia. Flanking the eastern end of the bridge and also the terminus of the Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway are two monumental sculptures on identical pedestals known as The Arts of War and The Arts of Peace, symbolic representations of warriors and healers respectively.
Why is it important to bridge the gap between our warrior and healing communities?
We have the greatest fighting force the world has ever known. We know how to train our warriors in the art of war. What we do not know is how to train those who have fought on our behalf in the arts of peace.
An extensive study conducted by the Veterans Administration found that in the years since 1979, an average of 20 veterans a day have committed suicide. In total, 262,980 of our nation's veterans have killed themselves since the end of the Vietnam War. MMDF believes the problem centers around conversation. For generations it was thought that the best medicine for dealing with the traumas of war was to "suck it up" and "be tough." It has now become evident, thanks to pioneering efforts of scientists and health care professionals, that some of the best tools for armoring down from the traumas of war include mindfulness-based practices like yoga and meditation.
The healing community of yoga teachers, meditation guides, personal trainers, and other mind-body practitioners understands first-hand the transformational healing power of mindfulness. And we collectively agree that our warriors and veterans need mindfulness now more than ever.
But are our healers ready to serve our warriors? And do our warriors know how to find healers who are ready?
The solution: a DC-area resource map of warrior-friendly programs, teachers, and facilities.
Volunteering with The Bridge Project means you recognize the disconnect between America's military and healing communities and want to help bring the two together.
Are you interested in volunteering with MMDF and the Bridge Project?
Please complete the form below for more information or to join the MMDF team:
Not ready for the Bridge Project? Please consider joining the Honor Brigade - a group of volunteers offering mindful moments of gratitude for warriors at their Arlington National Cemetery grave sites. 6,958 warriors have fallen since September 11, 2001.
Almost 1,000 are buried at Arlington.