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Minnesota National Guard
Beyond the Yellow Ribbon  
Bringing Soldiers and their Families all the way home

The Minnesota National Guard has pioneered a program in hopes of changing how Soldiers and Airmen are reintegrated back to their communities. Called Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, the program is named as a reminder that the support of Soldiers cannot end when they return from deployment and the yellow ribbons are untied.
BTYR logo
Improve the Wellness and Resiliency of our Service members and Military Family Members

In 2012, the Minnesota National Guard will continue to educate Service members and their families on the important issues of resiliency, risk reduction and suicide prevention. During monthly training assemblies, we will train our Service members in resiliency and self-awareness.
When the Soldier or Airman is not on military duty, we will utilize our Yellow Ribbon Networks as a resource for families to help the Service member face difficult relationship, mental health, substance abuse, unemployment, financial or legal issues.

We will promote resiliency training through Master Resilience Trainers, individuals specially trained to advise unit commanders on the tactics and action steps that result in fewer suicides. We will promote awareness and educate our Service members to not only be self-aware, but also cognizant of the programs available and how to utilize those resources.

Staff will focus on resiliency in 2012: Military Family Life Counselors, trained to assist Service members and families; federally-funded Embedded Mental Health Providers, available for unit commanders throughout the state; and a full time Preventative Treatment and Outreach Officer, focused on ensuring substance abuse issues are adequately addressed.

We will continue our progress and continue to be engaged at every level while continuing to lead by example and remain committed to our Service member’s well being.

Go to the Minnesota National Guard's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon website.

Increase Awareness of Local, State and Federal Resources During Deployment and Reintegration

In 2012 the Minnesota National Guard will continue to expand our Yellow Ribbon Networks. Doing so will ensure that our Service members, their families and their employers will continue to receive the face-to-face support and awareness of the resources available to them.

We will continue to execute the internal programs designed to educate Service members and families on the resources available to them through Family Preparation Academies, Family Readiness Academies and reintegration events. The Family Preparation Academies help families and their Service members get ready for deployment through seminars, classes and access to service providers available all at one location. The Family Readiness Academies continue to assist the families during deployment with gatherings designed to bridge concerns that occur during the separation. Finally, the reintegration events focus on reuniting the Service member and families through facilitated sessions on such topics as resume building, family dynamics and overcoming relationship turmoil caused by deployment.

Another successful program that will be continued in 2012 is “Strong Bonds,” a retreat led by Minnesota National Guard chaplains that teaches Service members and their spouses tools for maintaining their relationships.

Finally, 2012 will see a renewed effort to link federal, state and local employment programs and resources with the Service members who need them.

Go to the Minnesota National Guard's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon website.
Veteran Employment Initiatives

The greatest challenge facing Minnesota National Guard Citizen-Soldiers and -Airmen in 2012 is the same as most Minnesotans: employment.

In a fall 2011 survey of the 2,700 Minnesota National Guard Citizen-Soldiers with the 1st Brigade Combat Team stationed in Kuwait, a daunting 28 percent of that deployed force acknowledged that they would be facing employment challenges when they return home in the spring 2012.

Despite the education and experience levels of Minnesota veterans, more than 12 percent of our veteran population is unemployed. Army National Guard Citizen-Soldiers have an unemployment rate of 16.4 percent with a total of 18 percent of the women in the Minnesota National Guard without full-time employment. Compare these figures to the 5.9 percent overall unemployment (as of Dec. 31, 2011) rate for all Minnesotans.

With these high numbers of unemployed Service members and veterans, the Employment Task Force, created in 2011, will be very important going into 2012. The group – representing state agencies, veterans groups and the National Guard – will continue to meet biweekly to develop a plan for unemployed Service members and veterans.

In 2012, the Minnesota National Guard will work closely with several state and federal departments and agencies to ensure that employers know the benefits that a military employee can bring to their organizations.

Go to the Minnesota National Guard's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon website.
Yellow Ribbon Communities

A Yellow Ribbon Community unites all areas within a community to create a comprehensive network that involves our Family Assistance Centers and connects and coordinates agencies, organizations, resources and employers for the purpose of proactively supporting Service members and military families.

In 2012, the Minnesota National Guard will continue to reach out to cities, towns, counties, companies and other organizations that strive to earn this designation.

Yellow Ribbon Cities inducted in 2011: Albert Lea, Cottage Grove, Eagan, Grand Rapids, Hibbing / Chisholm, Inver Grove Heights, Lower St. Croix Valley (Afton, Lakeland, Lakeland Shores, Lake St. Croix Beach, St. Mary’s Point), Marshall, Owatonna and Winona Region (Goodview, Lewiston, Minnesota City, Rollingstone, St. Charles, Utica, Winona and Winona County), Pine City, Plymouth, Richfield and Rosemount.

Yellow Ribbon Companies/Organizations inducted in 2011: Best Buy, Cliff’s Natural Resources, DHS/CBP, Inver Hills
Community College, Metropolitan Council, Minneapolis Hiring Center and Thomson Reuters.
Three Yellow Ribbon Counties and their cities were inducted in 2011: 1) Jackson County, which includes Alpha, Heron Lake, Jackson, Lakefield, Okabena and Wilder. 2) Martin County, which includes Ceylon, Dunnell, Fairmont, Granada, Northrop, Ormsby, Sherburn, Trimont, Truman and Welcome. 3) Watonwan County, which includes Butterfield, Darfur, La Salle, Lewisville, Madelia, Odin and St. James.

Go to the Minnesota National Guard's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon website.
Follow Beyond the Yellow Ribbon

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Finding fellowship in the sacred mission

Families recognized for sacrifices during Guard deployment

Month of the Military Child highlights the sacrifices of military kids

Camp Ripley Garrison Unit Ministry Team to deploy

Chef Challenge serves up for military and community

Minnesota's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Program to be recognized on State Fair Military Appreciation Day

Mental health focus of conference at Camp Ripley

Minnesota ministry teams lock arms for joint training

Minnesota Airman Joins Forces to Create Blue Watch

Minnesota veterans outdoor programs awarded $90,000 grant

Soldier values show through in community sharing

A wreath for every headstone

133AW and Best Buy Corporate join together to support Operation Gratitude

Minnesota Department of Corrections named Yellow Ribbon Company

Former Minnesota Guardsman Continues Service Outside of the Uniform

682nd Engineer Battalion receives community send-off

Camp Ripleys Open House Shares the Success of One Team

Event provides support for veteran business owners

682nd Soldiers, families enjoy picnic prior to deployment

Tee It Up for the Troops event recognizes service and sacrifice

Minnesota National Guard fun runs highlight the 'Power of One' in suicide prevention

Minnesota Guardsmen among 25 honored with Veterans' Voices Awards

Honor to the lost

Minnesota Dedicates Tribute to Military Families on the State Capitol Grounds

Minnesota Family Tribute Honors all Military and Veteran Families

Minnesota 'Purples Up' for Military Children

Statewide Joining Community Forces - Minnesota events provide support for communities and military

April recognized as Month of the Military Child

Gold Star Fathers Share Story of Love, Service and Sacrifice

Minnesota National Guard Presents Yellow Ribbon Company Seminar

Beth El Synagogue supports those who serve through 'Heroes Among Us' initiative

Hugo Yellow Ribbon Network Celebrates Five Years

A First Sergeant's Surprise

204th ASMC commander provides mission update on Minnesota Military Radio

Holiday gatherings strengthen military family togetherness

133rd Airlift Wing Receives Resilience Training through First Hand Experience

114th Transportation Company Welcome Home Ceremony

The conflict at home: Substance Abuse Awareness Month

Waseca veteran pushes area to become Yellow Ribbon community

Minneapolis-based Cargill becomes Yellow Ribbon Company

133rd Airlift Wing promotes healthy marriages with Strong Bonds

849th MAC's return celebrated all along Highway 12

Deploying Soldiers and families honored with steak lunch

Veterans in Crisis Law Enforcement Training

Purple Up! event brings awareness for Month of the Military Child in Minnesota

Purple Up! Day at the State Capitol Rotunda

DET 39 Soldiers' return warms families after long winter, separation

Norwood Young America proclaimed Yellow Ribbon community

Soldier surprises family as Scuba Claus

Camp Ripley and Community Share Holiday Cheer

Operation Helping Hands for Hometown Heroes

Veterans Reach Out to the Community During Local Coat Giveaway

Minnesota National Guard Leader Recognized by Collegiate Community

Family Matters Go Beyond the Uniform

Minneapolis becomes 254th Yellow Ribbon Network in Minnesota

Minnesota National Guard female leaders speak about helping military families, working and raising children

Shop, Ship and Share event supports U.S. Service members overseas

Tea time with senior master sergeant Dad

Chisholm community, families send off 114th Transportation Company

Camp Ripley Annual Golf Tournament Makes Historic Shots

Military children start off the school year on the right foot

Camp Ripley Hosts Camps for Military Youth

Military spouse and volunteer receives national award

Litchfield community says goodbye as the 849th MAC prepares for Afghanistan

Maple Grove scheduled for Yellow Ribbon Recognition

Beyond The Yellow Ribbon Program Grows in the Community

A big day for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve

Iraq War left mark on Minn. National Guard members, families

Veteran Reintegration Focus of Central Minnesota Forum

St Louis Park joins Beyond The Yellow Ribbon

Yellow Ribbon Summits draw out the best

Red Bulls Visit Local Veterans Home for the Holidays

Sgt. Josh Brummond: A Veterans Employment Success

Editorial: Commit, recommit to jobs for veterans

Timberwolves Celebrate Military Appreciation Month

Veterans reclaim memories of the hunt in Hugo

Forest Lake goes above and beyond with Yellow Ribbon designation

Red Shirt Rally Shows Support

Morris Area Yellow Ribbon Network poised for state recognition

Capt. Jason Anderson: A Veterans Employment Success

Soucheray: Help them soldier on

Low turnout for Yellow Ribbon meeting, but efforts continue

Coming Home: Creating Success for our Veterans

Minn. Guard veterans join reintegration events

Faribault proclaimed Yellow Ribbon City

Governor scheduled to recognize Yellow Ribbon entities at St. Paul Saints home opener

St. Paul joins Yellow Ribbon Network

Importance of Yellow Ribbon Networks

Mission Accomplished: Return of the 1st Brigade Combat Team

Faith communities plan military family support

Returning veterans seek jobs

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon gears up as soldiers return

National Guard funds that include Camp Ripley clear key committee

Klobuchar announces $3.6 million for National Guard projects

Richfield is a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Community 08/17/2011

Beyond The Yellow Ribbon goes countywide

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Initiative Gains Popularity (video) 08/01/2011

Yellow Ribbon program smooths the road home 07/28/2011

Going beyond the yellow ribbon 07/14/2011

New Yellow Ribbon program off to good start 06/23/2011

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon: County considers program for veterans, deployed Soldiers 05/18/2011

Chamber launches Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program 05/18/2011

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Program Receives Major Funding 05/13/2011

Kline’s Yellow Ribbon legislation fully funded in 2012 National Defense Bill 05/12/2011

Roseville area cities kick off Yellow Ribbon programs
Written by Sgt. 1st Class Melanie Nelson, 5/5/11

Yellow Ribbon Volunteer recognized at Twins game
Written by Sgt. Patrick Lock, 4/28/11

Blaine Yellow Ribbon kick-off event April 26 04/20/2011

City, county will go 'Beyond the Yellow Ribbon' 04/08/2011

Organizers work to make Albert Lea a Yellow Ribbon City 04/02/2011

Richfield is becoming a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon community 03/30/2011

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon 03/04/2011

Yellow Ribbon Program 02/09/2011

Lakeville area Veterans find support, services through Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program 02/08/2011

Guard Program Bolsters Community Support 01/18/2011

Shellito plans to reach out to veterans 01/14/2011

Sportsman's Guide, Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Join Forces for Coat Drive 01/03/2011

Support program to look Beyond the Yellow Ribbon 12/26/2010

Kline's legislation to improve Yellow Ribbon program 12/20/2010

Yellow Ribbon Network honors county 12/17/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon draws support in Alexandria 12/15/2010

Blaine will seek Yellow Ribbon City status 12/10/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Comes to Douglas County 12/07/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon offers support to military families 12/03/2010

St. Cloud State Honored as 'Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Campus' 11/19/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Awareness Week in full swing 11/09/2010

Duluth Celebrates Yellow Ribbon City Recognition 10/28/2010

County gains national award for Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program 10/22/2010

Veterans Learn about Small Businesses 10/20/2010
An 'awesome' day for Crookston, a Yellow Ribbon City 09/23/2010

Farmington plays host to Yellow Ribbon Summit 09/23/2010

Duluth Is Official Yellow Ribbon City 09/22/2010

Ridgewater College recognized for service to military veterans 09/22/2010

Yellow Ribbon City and Yellow Ribbon County 09/22/2010

Thirty organizations earned Yellow Ribbon status at Summit
Written by Spc. Miles Eakins, 9/22/10

Our View: Celebrate 'Yellow Ribbon' 09/19/2010

Spring Lake Park to be proclaimed Yellow Ribbon City 09/16/2010

Duluth Designated As Yellow Ribbon City 09/10/2010

Farmington will be state model, host to Yellow Ribbon summit 09/09/2010

Willmar to receive Yellow Ribbon City award for service to military members 09/09/2010

1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery reintegrates
Written by 1st Lt. Kenneth Toole, 8/6/10

City will be Minnesota model 08/05/2010

Help on the home front 08/04/2010

Ribbon Campaign Continues Support (video) 07/29/2010

National Guard to handle expanded program to aid military families 07/28/2010

Program for Minnesota military families handed off to National Guard 07/28/2010

Getting and finding support for military families 07/03/2010

Good crowd turns out for Beyond the Yellow Ribbon training 06/29/2010

Yellow Ribbon gets national award 06/16/2010

Finding the new normal 06/14/2010

Crookston striving to be a Yellow Ribbon City 06/08/2010

Yellow Ribbon and Beyond 05/31/2010

Plymouth kick starts Yellow Ribbon effort 05/17/2010

Rochester, Olmsted County earn Yellow Ribbon designations for efforts to help military families 05/10/2010

Rochester designated as a Yellow Ribbon City 05/04/2010

Bayport Communities aim for Yellow Ribbon 04/30/2010

Department Recognizes Best Reserve Component Family Programs 04/16/2010

Duluth to become a Yellow Ribbon city 04/13/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon starts up 04/12/2010

Spring Lake Park seeking ‘Yellow Ribbon’ status 04/03/2010

Beyond The Yellow Ribbon 03/31/2010

Brown County takes first step in becoming Yellow Ribbon County 03/21/2010

Red Bulls begin reintegration
Written by Capt. Kristin Augé, 3/6/10

St. Michael’s hopes to become a ‘Yellow Ribbon’ church 03/05/2010

Greater Brown County Beyond the Yellow Ribbon at Brown County Congress 03/03/2010

Spring Lake Park commits to military families 03/02/2010

Spring Lake Park to move forward with process to become a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon city 02/25/2010

Cities take the 'Yellow Ribbon City' challenge 02/14/2010

Our View: Yellow Ribbon work isn’t finished 02/10/2010

Mahtomedi's Yellow Ribbon Network expands efforts 02/09/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon organizational meeting 02/08/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon on MPR 02/06/2010

Haunted by going back 02/02/2010

Faelon awarded Yellow Ribbon 02/01/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon- Job Coaches Wanted 01/27/2010

Governor honors Stillwater as Yellow Ribbon City 01/14/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon supports vets, families 01/13/2010

Hugo earns its 'Yellow Ribbon' 01/12/2010

St. John Neumann named 'Yellow Ribbon Church' 01/12/2010

Backup for the troops: Stillwater, Washington County receive Yellow Ribbon status 01/06/2010

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon participants honored at ceremony 01/05/2010

Military friendly organizations proclaimed Yellow Ribbon
Written by Spc. Miles Eakins,1/5/10

Lake Elmo becomes 'Beyond the Yellow Ribbon' city 12/22/2009

Support for our Soldiers: Stillwater looks to become Yellow Ribbon City 12/04/2009

Support for our soldiers: Stillwater looks to become a Yellow Ribbon City 11/25/2009

Stillwater to become Yellow Ribbon city 10/29/2009

Woodbury Residents Work Toward Becoming Yellow Ribbon City
Written by Officer Candidate Melanie Nelson, 10/01/09

Your turn: Cities can go beyond yellow ribbons 09/26/2009

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon 04/22/2009

Helping to make a Yellow Ribbon network 04/22/2009

Group working to make Washington County first ‘Yellow Ribbon’ county 03/11/2009

St. Cloud may seek Yellow Ribbon status 03/08/2009

Rochester to Become a Yellow Ribbon Community 02/25/2009

Yellow Ribbon campaign expands 06/16/2008

Veterans Reintegration Seminar
Written by Sgt. Lynette Hoke, 1/30/08

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Award Ceremony 12/17/2007

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Pilot program established to help National Guard Soldiers with reintegration 11/17/2007

National Reintegration hits the airwaves

Written by Sgt. Joe Roos, 12/16/07

Minn. Guard launches new reintegration effort 10/22/2007

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, 30 Day Reintegration Event
Written by Sgt. 1st Class Richard Kemp, 9/15/07

Troops look beyond the yellow ribbons 08/08/2007

Defense chief backs national use of Minnesota Guard program 08/07/2007

Easing the Transition: Allowing Guard to Reintegrate Side-by-side 08/02/2007

City, Military Unite 08/01/2007

Editorial: The yellow ribbon -- and beyond 07/29/2007

The value of reintegration 07/17/2007

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, beyond Minnesota 05/01/2007

Kline to push for taking Minnesota Guard program national 04/20/2007

Minnesota Guard program getting national attention 04/20/2007

John Kline: Better support for troops back from combat 04/20/2007

Podcast- WCCO on Beyond The Yellow Ribbon 03/30/2007

Veteran's live beyond the yellow ribbon 02/15/2007

Family Reintegration Academy in Alexandria 2/3/07

Reintegration Takes a Huge Step 9/22/06

Sgt. 1st Class Stacey Holley
YRRS Communications NCO
Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Services