Since opening in 2014, Jacksonville’s Veterans United Craft Brewery is no stranger to helping their community and helping veterans. The brewery regularly hosts events and brews beers to support pet adoption and veterans charities. Now Veterans United has teamed up with The Fire Watch, a community-based program focused on bringing an end to veteran suicide in Northeast Florida.
About the beer:
WatchStander IPA is a special release New England style IPA. To create the juicy flavor of tropical fruits and citrus, the beer was brewed and dry-hopped with an immense amount of Citra, Eukanot, Galaxy, and Mosaic hops. Hazy and light golden in color, the WatchStander is an extremely drinkable beer that is packed with hop flavor.
The Fire Watch is Northeast Florida’s fight to end veteran suicide. Northeast Florida is home to 1,500,000 residents, 6 military installations and 150,000 military veterans. Over 6,300 U.S. veterans die by suicide each year, including more than 540 in Florida. The highest rate of suicide among veterans is in the age group 18 to 34. That is also the largest age demographic separating from active duty every year. This means the veteran suicide problem is only getting worse – here and across the nation.
How does FireWatch help?
The Fire Watch’s cornerstone veteran suicide prevention initiative is the Watch Stander program. It was launched on May 1, 2020, and is a community-led, early intervention network of veterans and civilian volunteers trained to identify risk factors of veterans in crisis and to direct those veterans to the help and resources they need. The program is available to everyone in our community. It takes just 30 seconds to enroll and 30 minutes to train. Those who complete the training and sign a pledge to be vigilant to the
concerns of veterans receive a Watch Stander certificate, a wrist band, a car sticker, and a wallet card. The wallet card is to remind them how to take action when they encounter a veteran in need. Our goal is 10,000 Watch Standers watching out for Northeast Florida veterans by the end of 2022.
About Veterans United Craft Brewery
We are dedicated to satiating healthy appetites with flavorful beer through the use of fresh, quality ingredients and hope to expand the definition of what beer can be through our hard work and innovation. We also value ideas and technologies that reinforce our social and environmental responsibility to our local community.
Veterans United Craft Brewery is committed to making a positive contribution to Jacksonville and beyond, and we look forward to sharing a pint with you!