Eric Greitens

  • Aired:  05/02/13
  •  | Views: 10,988

The Mission Continues founder and CEO Eric Greitens discusses his plan to help returning veterans transition into civilian service and leadership roles. (7:06)

>> Jon: WELCOME BACK, MY

GUEST TONIGHT, HE IS THE

FOUNDER AND C.E.O. OF THE

MISSION CONTINUE, A

NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION THAT

WORKS WITH MILITARY

VETERANS.

PLEASE WELCOME TO THE

PROGRAM ERIC GREITENS.

(APPLAUSE)

>> HOW ARE YOU.

>> WE'RE GREAT, DOING VERY

WELL.

>> BEFORE WE GET STARTED A

WANT TO GIVE PEOPLE A SMALL

SENSE OF WE ARE DEALING WITH,

ARE YOU A NAVY SEAL, BEEN

DEPLOYED FOUR TIME.

>> FOUR TIMES YOU ARE A

DOCTOR.

>> I'M GOING TO GO WITH

OXFORD.

YOU ARE A RODE SCHOLAR.

>> YEAH.

>> YOU HAVE A BLACK BELT IN

TIE KWAN DO.

>> I AM NEVER LETTING YOU

MEET MY WIFE.

HOW ARE YOU.

>> I'M DOING GREAT, DOING

GREAT, DOING WELL.

>> Jon: I WANT TO TALK ABOUT

THIS, THE PROGRAM THAT YOU

HAVE, THIS MISSION CONTINUES

I FEEL LIKE SAY

REVOLUTIONARY PROGRAM THAT

IS SO INTUITIVE I CAN'T

BELIEVE IT HASN'T BEEN DONE

BEFORE BUT EXPLAIN VERY

QUICKLY THE IDEA BEHIND THE

COMMISSION?

>> THE MISSION CONTINUES IS

A NATIONAL SERVICE

ORGANIZATION THAT HELPS POST

9/11 VETERANS TRANSITION

FROM THE MILITARY TO SERVICE

AND LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS HERE

AT HOME WE BELIEVE THIS

GENERATION OF VETERANS ARE

ASSETS TO THE COUNTRY.

WE BELIEVE THEY COME BACK

WITH GREAT EXPERIENCE AND

SKILLS.

AND WE PUT THEM THROUGH AN

INTENSIVE SIX MONTH SERVICE

AND LEADERSHIP PLACEMENT IN

THEIR COMMUNITY WHERE THEY

START WORKING WITH HABITAT

FOR HUMANITY, WITH BIG

BROTHER, BIG SISTER, THE

BOYS & GIRLS CLUB AND THEY

START SERVING AGAIN HERE AT

HOME.

>> RIGHT.

>> AND THAT --

>> SO HERE'S WHAT I THINK IS

SO INCREDIBLE ABOUT IT.

THE IMMEDIATE REFLEX ON THE

PART OF THE AMERICAN PUBLIC,

AND I THINK IT'S A

WELL-INTENTIONED ONE S HOW

DO WE HELP THESE PEOPLE?

THESE MEN AND WOMEN WHO HAVE

GIVEN SO MUCH TO THIS

COUNTRY.

WE WANT TO GIVE THEM

SOMETHING.

BUT THE TRUTH IS WITHIN THEM

ASK THE DESIRE TO CONTINUE

SERVING US.

>> YES.

WHEN THEY COME HOME THEY

WANT TO FIND A WAY TO

CONTINUE TO SERVE.

AND A LOT OF THESE MEN AND

WOMEN WHEN THEY LEAVE THE

MILITARY THEY'RE LOOKING FOR

THAT SENSE OF PURPOSE,

ACCOMPLISHMENT, CAMARADERIE

THEY HAD IN THE MILITARY.

WHAT HAPPENS IS A LOT OF

GOOD PEOPLE, THEY COME FROM

A GOOD PLACE, GOOD

INTENTIONS BUT START GIVING

THINGS TO VETERANS.

THEY GIVE THEM FREE BASEBALL

TICKETS, FREE HALFIE TICKETS,

THEY GIVE THEM GIFT BASKETS

AND BLANKETS.

YOU CAN IMAGINE, A

23-YEAR-OLD MARINE, MAYBE

YOU WERE INJURED IN IRAQ OR

AFGHANISTAN.

YOU COME BACK-- .

>> Jon: YOU ARE SAYING I CAN

IMAGINE BEING A 23-YEAR-OLD

MARINE.

>> WELL, MAYBE, MAYBE.

THEY COME BACK, AND WHAT

HAPPENS IS WHEN PEOPLE START

GIVING THEM STUFF THEY START

TO INTERNALIZE THE IDEA THAT

THEY ARE CHARITY CASES.

AND THEY'RE NOT.

THEY'RE NOT LOOKING FOR A

HANDOUT.

THIS GENERATION OF VETERANS

WANTS TO FIND A WAY TO

CONTINUE TO SERVE.

>> Jon: AN HERE WE ARE IN A

COUNTRY THAT IS DESPERATELY

IN NEED OF THAT ETHOS AND WE

HAVE MYRIAD PROBLEMS GOING

ON IN THE COUNTRY.

IT SEEMS LIKE A PERFECT

MATCH.

IT'S ALMOST AS IF WE HAVE

THESE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS

OF INCREDIBLY DEDICATED

SMART, TENACIOUS INDIVIDUALS

COMING BACK TO THE COUNTRY,

LOOKING TO SERVE, A COUNTRY

THAT NEEDS THIS SERVICE.

WHY IS IT DIFFICULT TO PUT

THOSE TWO ENTITIES TOGETHER

AGAIN?

>> WE FOUND THAT IT'S

ACTUALLY WORKING REALLY

WELL.

SO THROUGH THE MISSION

CONTINUES YOU'VE GOT

HUNDREDS OF VETERANS WHO ARE

COMING BACK.

AND WHEN THEY GET ENGAGE

APPROXIMATED IN THEIR

COMMUNITIES, THESE ARE MEN

AND WOMEN LIKE TONY, AN AIR

FORCE EXPLOSIVE ORDNANCE

TECHNICIAN, ACTUALLY

DIFFUSING BOMBS IN PLACES

LIKE IRAQ, HE COMES BACK AND

HE WORKS IN D.C. IN THE

DEPARTMENT OF VOLUNTEERISM.

HE GAUGES OTHER PEOPLE, GETS

THEM TO START TO SERVE

AGAIN.

NATIONALLY WILLIAMS WAS A

NURSE, WAS SERVING IN THE

UNITED STATES NAVY, A

CORPSMEN AND HORRIBLE COMBAT

ACCIDENT, HAD A PROPELLER

RUN THROUGH HER FACE.

SHE LOST HER RIGHT EYE,

SEVERELY INJURED.

CAME BACK HOME AND SHE WAS

STRUGGLING.

PEOPLE WEREN'T REACHING OUT

TO HER.

SHE WAS A MOTHER.

THE BEST JOB SHE HAD WAS

WORKING AT A TOY STORE.

WE STARTED AT THE MISSION

CONTINUES, WE ACTUALLY ASKED

HER TO START TO SERVE AGAIN.

WE CREATED A FELLOWSHIP WITH

HER FOR HER AT CHILDREN'S

HOSPITAL IN ST. LOUIS

MISSOURI AND TODAY SHE IS

WORKING THERE FULL-TIME.

>> TREMENDOUS.

>> Jon: TREMENDOUS IDEA.

AND WHEN YOU HEAR ABOUT IT,

YOU KNOW, YOU DON'T WANT TO

EXPAND IT BEYOND ITS

CAPACITY AT THIS POINT.

BUT I CONDITION HELP BUT

WONDER IF LOCALITY, STATE,

THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

REQUEST ENGAGE WITH YOU GUYS,

THERE'S ALMOST THIS MENU,

YOU ARE CREATING ALMOST

THESE, I GUESS YOU CALL THEM

PLATOONS, YES.

>> YES, WE'RE GOING TO HAVE

SERVICE PLATOONS ALL OVER

THE COUNTRY.

>> RIGHT.

>> WHERE MISSION CONTINUES

FELLOWS ARE ENGAGING THEIR

FELLOW VETERANS AND WE THINK

THIS CAN REALLY BE 9 LECH

SEE OF THIS GENERATION OF

VETERANS.

>> UH-HUH.

>> THAT 10, 20 YEARS FROM

NOW WHEN PEOPLE THINK ABOUT

THIS GENERATION OF VETERANS

THEY THINK OF A GROUP THAT

SERVED OVERSEAS AND CAME

BACK HOME AND THEY CONTINUED

TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN

THEIR COMMUNITY.

>> IF YOU CAN NATION BUILD

IN AFGHANISTAN, YOU CAN DO

IT IN CHICAGO.

>> YOU CAN.

YOU CAN.

>> OBVIOUSLY CHICAGO A

LITTLE MORE DANGEROUS.

BUT STILL.

>> BUT STILL, YES, YES.

>> IT CAN BE DONE.

>> IT CAN BE DONE.

>> NOW WHEN THEY COME BACK,

I THINK THE OTHER

INTERESTING THING THAT YOU

TOUCH UPON WAS THAT YD OF

CAMARADERIE AND NOT ONLY ARE

THEY SERVING THE COMMUNITY,

THEY'RE SERVING EACH OTHER.

>> YES.

>> BECAUSE NO ONE

UNDERSTANDS THAT SITUATION

LIKE A FELLOW VETERANS.

>> RIGHT.

>> YOU'VE GOT AN ALL

VOLUNTEER FORCE.

AS YOU KNOW LESS THAN 1% OF

THE COUNTRY IS SET FOOT IN

PLACES LIKE IRAQ OR

AFGHANISTAN.

WHEN THEY COME HOME AND

START TO SERVE AGAIN, THEY

ALSO START SUPPORTING EACH

OTHER.

AND WHAT WE FOUND AT THE

MISSION CONTINUES IS THAT

THEY ARE ACTUALLY FORMING

THEIR OWN PLAT ON IN CITIES

LIKE CHICAGO, AND SAN DIEGO

AND ST. LOUIS AND HOUSTON

AND BOSTON AMOUNT OF.

AND THEY COME TOGETHER AND

START TO SUPPORT EACH OTHER,

LET'S SAY IF YOU ARE HAVING

TROUBLE WITH THEIR BENEFITS

YOU GOT TO SEE THIS FIRST.

IF YOU NEED THE RIGHT

PHYSICAL THERAPY, GO SEE

THIS PARTICULAR DOCTOR.

AND THEY START TO ACTUALLY

SERVE TOGETHER AND HELP EACH

OTHER IN THEIR COMMUNITIES.

>> HOW DO VETERANS FIND

THEIR WAY BECAUSE THE OTHER

SIDE OF PUTTING TOGETHER

THESE PROGRAMS IS THE

OUTREACH TO VETERANS TO GET

THEM INVOLVED IN THIS.

HOW IS THAT GOING TO BE

ACCOMPLISHED?

>> SO ANY VETERAN IS

AVAILABLE, IF THEY WANT TO

GO OFF TO MISSION

CONTINUES.ORG.

GO OUT TO MISSION CONTINUES

.ORG AND LEARN ABOUT WHAT WE

ARE DOING TO ENGAGE VETERANS

IN SERVICE, THAT'S THE FIRST

THING.

AVAILABLE TO ANY POST 9/11

VETERAN, COME OUT TO THE WEB

SITE.

BUT WHAT IS ACTUALLY

HAPPENING, WE'RE FINDING, IS

THAT OVER HALF OF THE PEOPLE

WHO ARE JOINING OUR PROGRAM

ARE COMING AT REFERRALLALS

TO THE CURRENT PEOPLE IN OUR

PROGRAM AND THEY ARE SAYING

LOOK, THIS REALLY CHANGED MY

LIFE.

I CAME BACK HOME.

I STARTED SERVING AGAIN.

I REBUILT A SENSE OF HURPS.

I FIGURED OUT HOW I COULD

USE MY SKILLS IN A CIVILIAN

CONTEXT AND THEY ARE

REFERRING THEIR FRIENDS THAT

THEY SERVED WITH OR MIGHT

HAVE BEEN IN THE HOSPITAL W

THEY ARE COMING BACK AND

SERVING AGAIN.

>> WELL, IT'S-- WHAT YOU ARE

DOING IS INCREDIBLY

REMARKABLE.

I CANNOT TELL YOU HOW

INSPIRING IT IS FOR ME TO

SEE.

AND FOR YOU GUYS TO.

AND THE EXAMPLES OF HOW IT

ACTUALLY, PRACTICALLY IS

WORKING.

AND IT'S REALLY WONDERFUL.

SO CONGRATULATIONS.

>> THANK YOU.

>> ERIC GREITENS, MISSION

CONTINUES.ORG.

CHECK IT OUT.

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