Under The Hood Cafe
Friends and Supporters:
As you all know, Under the Hood Café does not run by itself. Now, more than ever, funds are needed to keep things moving smoothly and to encourage development. Under the Hood provides a refuge and a voice for soldiers in need. Soldiers have access to a network of mental health providers who are Tricare approved as well as pro bono. In addition, recently Under the Hood has secured a local lawyer willing to provide free advice as well as some pro bono services. This is only the beginning. With events, support groups, and meetings, and new soldiers arriving daily, we have the opportunity to build this community and continue giving a voice to those in need. We cannot do this alone. Though we know that times are difficult financially for everyone, we ask that you open your hearts and your pocketbooks. If we obtain five dollars from 8400 people, we will be able to keep our doors open for another year. With an additional two dollars, we can secure the house next door and provide additional services for our soldiers and veterans. We are engaged in endless fighting and those returning home are broken. Please allow us to continue our mission in aiding the soldiers, veterans, and families who need us most. We cannot survive without your support.
The following are two testimonials written by Under the Hood patrons, both active soldiers, and endless supporters. They speak for themselves:
October 31st 2007 I made one of the biggest mistakes of my life. Though I knew it would change my life, I never expected it to change for the worse. After completing basic combat training I was shipped out to my new unit in the 4th Infantry Division 1st brigade combat team 66th Armor Regiment. After a year of training and living the army life in Ft. Hood, TX, I received deployment orders to FOB Rustamiayh, just east of Baghdad, IQ. After my arrival in Iraq, my eyes quickly opened, and I began to oppose the “mission”. While I was over there I discovered Casey Porter, a dedicated filmmaker seeking to reveal the truths of Iraq, and we became friends. I did everything I could to assist him in his work, including a video interview. My tour finally ended after months of emotional struggle and I came back to the United States empty, with nothing inside me but hopelessness and regret.
After mere days of being home and “free” I began drinking heavily to forget the destruction and death I witnessed in Iraq. My life began to slowly disintegrate, and I found myself lost. Finally, Casey called and told me to come with him to Under the Hood Café. Though intoxicated at the time, I made my way down and immediately felt at home. Now two months later I feel my life is getting back on track and I have goals. I have completely quit drinking, and have remained sober for almost two months. I no long rely on alcohol to suppress my feelings. I feel that I am part of a support group who I can contact at any time, day or night. Now I can safely say that I feel better about myself, and I feel if it wasn’t for the coffee shop and the people I have met there, I feel I wouldn’t be here today. Under The Hood has saved my life and it needs to stay open for more people like me.
I lived a miserable existence since I turned against the war in Iraq in 2007. I have frequented Under the Hood Café since its grand opening in March of 2009. The café has become my refuge from a closed-minded and dehumanizing military culture. I have seen it bring joy to every soldier and civilian that has become a regular here. The civilian staff is dedicated to helping soldiers deal with personal and legal issues. I have attained a sense of purpose that I have never had in my life. I am now committed to the success of both Under the Hood and the anti-war movement. I have spent countless hours discussing and thinking about ways to end these wars. The support I have received from my family at Under the Hood has helped me take the liberating leap from obedient soldier to war resister. I cannot remember the last time I was this happy. Under the Hood has changed my life forever.
- SPC Victor Agosto,
Afghanistan War Resister
To give much needed donation you can go to our website www.underthehoodcafe.org. We are non-profit and have our 501c3 statue so all donations are tax deductible. We are asking everyone for help. Please send this to as many friends, family and supports as you can.
Thank you all for your support.
FORT HOOD SUPPORT NETWORK
IRAQ VETERANS AGAINST THE WAR SUPPORTER
In war, there are no unwounded soldiers.
- Jose Narosky