The Shay Moral Injury Center

The Shay Moral Injury Center at Volunteers of America offers educational programs for the general public and service providers, such as mental health professionals, medical workers, chaplains, and clergy about moral injury, an affliction of conscience, identity, and meaning because of harm we cause, witness, or experience from others. Through our research and training programs, we offer effective strategies and processes that support healing for those who experience moral injury and that enhance moral resilience.

Under the direction of Rita Nakashima Brock, PhD, since 2017, the Center builds on Volunteers of America's work, spanning more than a century of helping formerly incarcerated people, military veterans, and others who live with the burden of moral injury.

The Center is named in honor of psychiatrist Dr. Jonathan Shay, who, in his years of work with Vietnam era veterans, coined the term moral injury to refer to the “undoing of character” that war can inflict on good soldiers. Dr. Shay was the expert advisor to the Center’s successful, evidence-based, inaugural pilot program for military veterans, called Resilience Strength Training.