An initiative to bring awareness to suicide prevention and promote positive mental health.
“Veterans are our Mission. Gaming is our Passion.” is the Stack Up mission that serves as the common thread which brings veterans and civilian supporters together through a shared love of video gaming.
At Stack Up, we recognize that PTSD, depression, and emotional distress affect millions of veterans and are a leading cause of isolation and suicide within our community. The Stack Up Overwatch Program (StOP) is designed to watch over our community and provide critical support to veterans and active-duty military personnel through round-the-clock access to a team of trained and certified crisis management volunteers.
Our StOP Squad is trained and certified specifically to assist in crisis intervention, suicide prevention, and issues concerning the mental health of those in current or previous military duty.
Through Discord, you have 24 hour a day access to passionate members of our StOP Squad who are ready to assist you with gaining mental health resources, support services, therapeutic resources, financial resources, and to be present if you simply need someone to talk to or game with.
The Stack Up StOP Squad understands that transitioning from active-duty to civilian life can bring on persistent mental health issues and hardships in the life of active-duty military personnel, veterans, and civilians connected to our community. All Squad members are HIPAA certified so you can be assured that all matters discussed are kept private and in strict confidence between you and the member you are communicating with.
WHY WE SERVE
Active-duty military face extraordinary pressure in the line of duty, but after service is over another challenge begins. It is okay to want to be healthy and to seek help when you are facing troubling times, feeling a lack of purpose or will to persevere, or simply need a safe space to talk and revitalize your mental health.
Our StOP Squad is a ready and acting extension of the Stack Up family, born out of the specific need to support you through any point of your journey, to provide continued support, and to connect you with resources that support your mental health needs in a positive, healing light.
Since we talk about it so much in the gaming community, mental health is such a huge thing that is finally getting the attention that it deserves… There was such a negative emotion around it… When you talked about mental health, when you talked about needing to talk to someone, if you used the words like ‘anxiety’ or ‘depression’, there was such a negative connotation that you should just be able to ‘get over it’ and you should be ‘fine’ and it’s ‘all in your head’… We’re putting some weight behind what mental health actually means. That it is a part of your body that you need to keep healthy just like anything else.
As a veteran I struggled to come to terms with being back. Feeling like I was stuck between two lives. Military. And civilian. Running into Stack Up at PAX East was a surprise. They felt like family. From there I learned about their efforts to help veterans and active duty service members. All over the glo…be It is truly inspirational, and I am proud to be a part of their community. The aid they give is truly beyond measure. Both publicly and behind the scenes. read more
I can immediately hop on [Discord] and have a conversation with them and game with them. And it’s always easier to talk to someone digitally or through an avatar, than it is sometimes to in person… Especially when you have this warrior mentality that you know you’re supposed to be the big tou…gh guy, no one is supposed to see you cry, you never show weakness because you have this idea that when you weakness that’s it, the enemy has won. read more
The games is what we use to connect on a level, but there is so much more that stands behind what they do at Discord… You guys have been able to utilize this service that so many of us love so much… that so many people connect on… [to] on and then try and help someone who is pos…sibly going through the worst times of their life read more
StOP DISCORD TEAM
The StOP Initiative is led by Stephanie Owens, Stack Up Program Director, herself a retired emergency medical services technician and career first responder, and Elvis Walden, Assistant Stack Director and leader of the Austin, TX Stack and US Veteran.
In partnership with PsychArmor, the American Society of Suicidology, and readjustment counselor, Mat Bergendahl, the StOP Squad has been trained under a curriculum tailored for the specific needs and nature of circumstances that our Stack Up members face. Each Squad member has passed an intensive scenario-based, crisis-intervention practical evaluation and is HIPAA trained and certified.
Other Stack Up Programs
Stack Up hand-picks deserving veterans and pays for them to attend life-changing video game and geek culture events.
Our volunteers help bring comfort and friendship to veterans coping with PTSD or transitioning back to civilian life.