Monday, December 12, 2022



Last night was a huge win for our country's veterans. CreatiVets founder and executive director, Richard Casper, was named one of this year's CNN Heroes of the Year. Richard was recognized for his outstanding work with fellow veterans and his mission to heal through various forms of art.

Richard served four years as in the United States Marine Corps, with a combat deployment in Fallujah, Iraq. During his deployment, he was hit by four IEDs in just four short months, causing him to suffer a traumatic brain injury. Upon returning home, Richard found it hard to adjust and suffered from PTS until he discovered the healing power of music and visual art. After experiencing firsthand the impact music and art had on his own recovery, Richard co-founded CreatiVets to help other veterans who are suffering and need an outlet to express their pain, tell their stories and find a way to begin to heal.

CreatiVets works with veterans through the arts, allowing these brave men and women various ways to express themselves in some of the most personal ways possible - visual and through song. Researchers and clinicians have found that healing through writing, music and visual art is a strong, viable outlet for veterans because these forms of expression do not necessitate exposure to the facts of the trauma, and also allow the individual to avoid the stigma of receiving mental health treatment. They can heal at their pace in their own, deeply personal, way. 

CreatiVets has partnered with The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) for a three week art program and University of Southern California (USC) for a two week, fully-accredited art program for disabled veterans at no cost to the veteran. Veterans have full access to studios and equipment at the school, and the program gives them an opportunity to create and discuss art with some of the best art instructors in the country. Through the process, veterans learn the benefits of using art as a form of stress and anxiety relief, as well as a way to tell their stories. Upon graduating from the program, the participating veterans have the opportunity to share the pieces they have created at a gallery showcasing their works. Through this showcase, the veterans are able to help raise public awareness about the challenges facing veterans and how art can assist in addressing the psychological and emotional struggles that arise from combat-related trauma. Check out SAIC’s “Healing Through Art” for more information about 2015’s program.

Some of Nashville's best songwriters and artists have come together to extend a hand to assist them in the crafting of their musical stories - Aaron Lewis, Vince Gill, Drake White, Tyler Farr, Craig Morgan, Justin Moore, Casey Beathard, Tommy Karlas, Brian White, Mitch Rossell, Brian Davis, Lewis Brice, Heath Sanders, Granger Smith, Josh Grider, Randy Rogers, Love and Theft, Eric Burgett, Lance Carpenter, Chris Ferrara,  Craig Campbell, Blackjack Billy, Brantley Gilbert and countless others have jumped in the mission to give back to those that have given their all to help a country of people they don't even know. 

In a time with so much uncertainty, division and negativity in the world, Creativets provides an environment of caring, positivity and love. How can you not support an organization like this? I'd love to see more artists and writers get involved with this wonderful group of people and really spread the word. Now is the time to stand by those who stood in front of us. Can I get a boo-yah?

For more information on CreatiVets, go to and follow them on social media:

Twitter - @Creativets1

You can stream and download the music created by the veterans and artists listed above through Creativets on most digital music outlets.

If you'd like to join the fight and volunteer, apply here.

If you'd like to donate, you can give here.

No comments: