MakeTheConnection.net

Make the Connection is a public awareness campaign by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that connects Veterans and their friends and families with information, resources, and solutions to issues affecting their health, well-being, and everyday lives. The campaign encourages Veterans and their families to “make the connection” — with information and resources, with the strength and resilience of Veterans like themselves, and with available resources of support. The success of Make the Connection depends on support from everyone who interacts with Veterans: community members around the country, Veteran Service Organizations, community-based groups, and health care providers who have direct contact with Veterans every day. Download, print, and share these Make the Connection information cards to spread the word about this useful resource for Veterans and their loved ones.
If you have any questions, please contact Koby South at: [email protected].

VA Caregiver Support

Caregiver Services

VA offers a number of services that can provide you with the support that’s right for you. Whether you and the Veteran you care for could use some help at home or you just need someone to listen, we’re here to support you.

New Benefits for Family Caregivers of Post-9/11 Veterans

New Services for Family Caregivers of Post-9/11 Veterans

If you are the Family Caregiver of a Veteran who was injured post-9/11, you may be eligible for additional services through VA, including a stipend, comprehensive training and medical coverage through VA if you are not already covered by a plan. Follow the link to learn more about the newest services and to see if you are currently eligible.

Caregiver Support Questions?

Have questions about VA Caregiver Support Services? Contact VA’s Caregiver Support Line:

Support Line! 1-855-260-3274

(1-855-260-3274) or your local Caregiver Support Coordinator for assistance.

Fun @ firebase116.org – “Kid’s Pages”

firebase116.org is proud to announce that we’re having kids!  We have links now that are safe, fun and interesting for kids of all ages.  Check out the CIA, NSA or the FBI kids pages, or go to the National Zoo and watch their animals on live webcams.  All the links are on the right side of the front page…scroll way down (sorry) and HAVE fun!  Look for new and fun sites to be listed in the future too!

Arrr. Visit our Kids pages Matey!

Ship Ahoy!

The Veterans Opportunity to Work (VOW) to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

Are you or do you know an unemployed Veteran age 35-60?

If so, there is a new Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Labor’s (DOL) education benefit program that helps train Veterans in high demand occupations.

As a VetSuccess.gov user we would like to share information about our new programs and benefits that are underway due to the enactment of a new law. In an effort to reduce Veteran unemployment, the President signed into law the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 last November.  Included in this new law is the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) for unemployed Veterans, which VA begins accepting applications May 15, 2012.

VRAP will provide 99,000 eligible Veterans with up to one year of additional Montgomery GI Bill benefits in order to help you earn training and certifications in high-demand job. In order to receive these benefits, you must attend a VA approved program of education offered by a community college or technical school.

The requirements to be eligible for the VRAP program are:

  • You must be unemployed the day you apply
  • You must be least 35 but no more than 60 years old
  • You must have an other than dishonorable discharge
  • You must not be eligible for any other VA education benefit program (e.g., the Post 9/11 GI Bill, Montgomery GI Bill, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment)
  • You must not in receipt of VA compensation due to Individual Unemployability (IU)
  • You cannot be enrolled in a federal or state job training program
  • You must be enrolled in a VA approved program of education offered by a community college or technical school

You can begin applying May 15, 2012, but cannot start any education or training until June 1, 2012 and you must apply to VA by March 31, 2014.

I cannot encourage you enough to take advantage of this unique opportunity if you are eligible, and if you are not, but know a fellow Veteran, who may be eligible, please pass this information along to them.

Also under this new law,  if you are a Veteran with a service-connected disability and have previously completed a VA vocational rehabilitation program and have used the initial 26 weeks of unemployment benefits you may qualify for an additional 12 months of VA vocational rehabilitation benefits.  To be eligible you must:

  • Have previously completed a VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program and been considered “rehabilitated” by VA.
  • Apply within six months of using up your initial 26 weeks of unemployment benefits. You may still qualify for extended or emergency unemployment benefits.

To apply or learn more information about VRAP or Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment benefits, including on how to apply please visit:

www.benefits.va.gov/VOW

Your best bet…Hire a Vet!

Resources: