A group of women have put together a calendar to help veterans heal from trauma; local business owner Stacey Ferrari is one of those women.
They’re calling themselves “Women on a Mission” in an effort to raise money for national non-profit Mission 22, whose goal is ending veteran suicide through innovative treatment and programs.
Ferrari, who owns Ferrari’s Appliance at 460 New Britain Ave. in Newington and its founding location in Naugatuck, is one of the ladies leading the charge.
“The more support we get the more we can do and the more we can give,” she said.
The 2019-20 calendar features nine women who ride motorcycles, including Ferrari. Photographs were done by Regina Ceryak of Blue House Photos. The idea first came from Jennifer Hanley, who went to a high school with Ferrari.
“It all started last fall when I was doing a bunch of different events on Facebook and our photographer reached out to me to see if my friends and I wanted to do a photo shoot,” she explained. “I suggested we make a calendar.”
The friends decided on Mission 22, an organization working to end veteran suicide, as more than 20 servicemen and women end their lives on a daily basis, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Mission 22 partnered with Full Spectrum Health to offer veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) the Warrior Integration Now (WIN) program. The organization also leads memorial events and awareness initiatives through its partnership with other non-profit agencies.
As a U.S. Navy veteran herself and a sufferer of PTSD, Hanley can personally advocate for the cause.
“Throughout our town Mission 22 is very well-known,” she pointed out. “We have a lot of veterans in Naugatuck.”
Newington also happens to be home to a large population of veteran servicemen and women, with one of just two veterans hospitals in the state.
“Newington is very much family and community-oriented,” Ferrari said. “We definitely want to get people here involved in our efforts. We want to grow this.”
In a thank-you letter inside the calendar Hanley offered a little glimpse into the lives of the models on the pages.
“We are a group of local women that have decided to have a fun photo shoot for a cause,” it reads. “We are women that work, live and enjoy the wind but most importantly love our veterans and this country. We work, we get our hands dirty, we like to dress up, we ride, we run, we eat pizza and bacon; we have tattoos, we’re moms. We’re women on a mission.”
To purchase a calendar, visit CTWomenOnAMission on Facebook or Instagram. Anyone interested in sponsoring the next calendar is asked to call Stacey at 860-436-9993.
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097 or email@example.com.