Washington, DC - The American Red Cross is hosting a Learning Summit (Feb. 23 – Feb. 25) to bring together veteran and military family leaders and service providers from around the world to expand their provider network to meet critical needs for military families. This service delivery network provides help to hundreds of military families and veterans every day with emergency communication, transportation and financial assistance needs worldwide.

“As the gulf between the military and civilians is expanding, and the needs of our returning heroes continues to outpace current support efforts – the role of the American Red Cross, to connect the civilian community with the military to meet their needs, has never been clearer,” said Koby Langley, the senior vice president overseeing military and veteran programs and support at the Red Cross. “This Summit will lay the foundation for the Red Cross to evolve the Hero Care Network into a broader coalition, serving more military families and veterans than ever before.”

The Hero Care Network will focus on responding to non-emergency but critical military family needs by connecting people directly to highly-trained Red Cross caseworkers. These caseworkers will then assess a family’s needs in-person and then coordinate with trusted local veteran and military family service partners such as the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), the Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC), National Military Family Association of America (NMFA), Blue Star Families, Military One Source, and many others.

The inaugural Learning Summit will provide the setting for federal agencies and veteran and military service organizations to engage in meaningful dialogue around identifying challenges, solutions and strategies to ensure mutual success in delivering coordinated services. The summit begins Tuesday, February 23 at 8:00 a.m. and runs through Thursday, February 25 at the Sterling DoubleTree Hotel located at 21611 Atlantic Boulevard, Sterling, Virginia.

Rosemary Williams, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy, will be the featured speaker on Wednesday, February 24 at 9:00 a.m. The summit will also include leadership from the Department of Veteran Affairs, the Department of Defense, the Code of Support Foundation, Be The Change, Inc., and RAND. The sessions will focus on topics such as leadership training, volunteer engagement, community-based assessments and building collaborative relationships.

“We are currently positioned to help bridge the gap between those seeking assistance and the resources available to them in their communities,” continued Langley. “The Red Cross works on behalf of the American public to ensure that our military personnel get help whenever and wherever they need it.”

Learn more about the current Emergency Communication Services of the Red Cross Hero Care Network at www.Redcross.org/HeroCareNetwork.