Veterans Report - Week of December 08, 2014

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Veterans Report - Week of December 08, 2014

#1 Postby boardman » Wed Dec 10, 2014 7:07 am

Veterans Report - Week of December 08, 2014

Veterans, Transition Your Career to the Next Level at CSC
Whether through recruitment, philanthropy or volunteerism, CSC is proud to support our heroic military service members and their families. CSC values America's military community for its loyalty, diversity and strong work ethic. CSC's military hiring program is tailored to meet the career needs of transitioned personnel, veterans, wounded warriors and military spouses. ( ... Learn more.

Army Wife Network Holiday Special
It is the most wonderful time of the year here at Army Wife Network (AWN)! Our annual Army Wife Talk Radio (AWTR) holiday show is fast approaching. We have jubilant holiday cheer to share with our listeners this year! Chanda Bell, author of The Elf on the Shelf(R): A Christmas Tradition and the newly released Elf Pets(R): A Reindeer Tradition and North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) are the special guests for the annual holiday show.Tune in to AWTR ( ( beginning at 8PM ET on Monday, December 15th!
For more on military-related entertainment news, visit the ( Off-duty section.

Quilts of Valor
The mission of the Quilts of Valor Foundation is to cover all service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor. Local groups of seamstresses sew the quilts which are then given to veterans and service members. For more information, free quilt patterns, and to request a one-time gift of a Quilt of Valor, visit the Quilts of Valor Foundation website at (
For more veteran and family support resources, see this ( ... vices.html) Spouse Channel article.

Refinance Your VA Home Loan
The VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL) allows homeowners with mortgages through the VA to refinance their mortgage to a lower fixed interest rate with no out-of-pocket expense. The IRRRL does not require a new appraisal, so even if you owe more on your mortgage than your house is presently worth your loan could still be eligible for a refinance. Additionally, the IRRRL does not require a minimum credit score. The IRRRL can also use it to refinance out of an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) into a secure fixed rate. For more information, visit VA's VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan website at (, or ( contact a lender experienced in VA programs.

VA Expands Mental Health Care Eligibility
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has announced expanded eligibility for veterans in need of mental health care due to sexual assault or sexual harassment that occurred during their military service. This trauma is commonly known as military sexual trauma (MST). This expansion, which primarily pertains to Reservists and National Guard members participating in weekend drill, gives the authority to offer veterans the appropriate care and services needed to treat conditions resulting from MST that occurred during a period of inactive duty training. Veterans can learn more about VA's MST-related services online at VA's Military Sexual Trauma webpage at ( and see ( ... ual-trauma) video clips with the recovery stories of Veterans who have experienced MST.
For more veterans benefits info and updates, visit the ( Military Advantage blog.

Finding a Better Job
Here are seven steps to find a job you truly want: (1) decide if you are willing to embrace a simpler lifestyle to increase your career options--you may have to forego buying that new home or new car to take less in salary in a job you like; (2) identify your career nonnegotiables; (3) use time effectively to train for your new job or career; (4) do an intense, two-week job search; (5) make the job fit you; and (6) always look forward. For more information, ( ... r-job.html) read the article on the website.

National Wreaths Across America Day
Join over 600,000 volunteers nationwide in placing a wreath on a veteran's headstone. Invite your family and friends to an experience you will never forget, as we take a break from the hustle and bust le of the holiday season to honor our service men and women, and their families. Volunteers can get involved at any of the 900+ participating locations in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and national cemeteries on foreign soil. There are five ways to help: (1) Sponsor a Wreath; (2) Coordinate a wreath laying ceremony at a cemetery or veterans' memorial in your town; (3) Start a Fundraising Group; (4) Volunteer to place wreaths; (5) Donate via the Combined Federal Campaign # 66860.
For a complete list of participating locations and to learn how you can help visit (

Starting Your Own Business
There are two sources of information that help veterans to start their own businesses. The Small Business Administration offers assistance on how to write your business plan and calculate start-up cost. They also offer assistance when you are ready to grow your business or if you need to find a business mentor. The SBA also publishes an informational brochure titled " ( ... ackbus.pdf) Getting Veterans Back to Business: Veteran's Small Business Resource Guide". Also, the Office of Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) at ( has partnered with Business USA to optimize small business services for veterans. They have developed the Veteran Entrepreneur Portal (VEP) to help veteran business owners get connected to the help they need.
For more veteran job news, job postings and transition advice, visit the ( Veteran Jobs Center.

American Legion Sponsors Christmas Special
"The American Legion Christmas Special" with The Oak Ridge Boys and other performers has added air dates on individual stations across the country through Christmas. The schedule of airdates is available on the ( ... e-expanded) American Legion website. DVDs of the Christmas special are available at ( The American Legion Christmas Special website or by calling (888) 982-2256.
For more on military-related entertainment news, visit the ( Off-duty section.

Department Seeks Feedback
The Department of Energy (DoE) is asking for feedback from veterans who have held or currently hold positions as building engineers, energy auditors, energy managers or commissioning agents. Veterans with experience in those professions are asked to email ( or ( to be directed to DoE for a brief interview about their military experience, barriers they faced in entering the energy industry and how they were able to use their service skills to help them in their careers. DoE's efforts are part of a larger initiative that aims to help veterans find work in the energy industry by identifying the military skills that make a veteran successful in an energy career.
For more veteran job news, job postings and transition advice, visit the ( Veteran Jobs Center.

Texas Vets Mental Health Initiative
The Texas Veterans Initiative is a joint effort between the state and a nonprofit to provide state matching funds to local mental health efforts benefiting veterans. The Initiative is starting with a $1 million investment from the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to match local and private funds to expand and better coordinate mental health care services in communities. If the current pilot phase generates widespread interest from communities around the state, the Texas Legislature could act in 2015 to expand it. For more information and to respond to the current request for proposals, visit ( the Texas Veterans Initiative webpage.

Alabama to Expand Veterans Museum
The U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum in Huntsville, Ala. is getting some extra elbow room courtesy of the City of Huntsville, which is donating to the museum the use of medical clinic space in John Hunt Park. With the additional space, the museum plans to turn the old clinic into a new "grand entrance" and improved archives room. The museum, which boasts thousands of military artifacts dating back to the Revolutionary War, ran out of room long ago for its ever-growing collection. For more information, visit the U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum website at (

Get $200k Coverage from just $14 a Month
Protection for less. Get $200,000 coverage from only $14 a month. ( ... Could your family survive if something happened to you?

Still Time to Use Your 2014 VA Loan Benefit
Now is the time to use your VA Loan. Rates are near historic lows and you don't have to pay PMI or have a large down payment. Plus you can get financing up to $417,000. ( ... Use your VA Loan Benefit today.
( Want more information about this great benefit?

Colorado Seeks Vets for Season Help
The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is holding open houses to hire military veterans to fill seasonal temporary positions for snowplow drivers, heavy equipment mechanics and dispatchers. Two open houses at CDOT Headquarters located at 4201 East Arkansas Avenue in Denver, Colorado will be held on the following dates: Thursday, Dec. 11, 4-6 p.m.; and Wednesday, Dec. 17, 8-10 a.m. CDOT is looking to fill 60 positions, which require a require a good motor vehicle driving record and various technical driving abilities. To participate in the hiring open houses, you must make an appointment to reserve your interview spot. Please call (303) 757-9216 or e-mail ( at least 24 hours prior to the event. Please bring your resume to the interview.
For more veteran job news, job postings and transition advice, visit the ( Veteran Jobs Center.

Beware of Tech Support Scams
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued several phony tech support companies that often lure people to their websites with pop-up ads or web searches. Here are some tips to avoid these scams: (1) do not give control of your computer to someone who says they need to activate software or to someone who calls you out of the blue claiming to be from tech support; (2) never provide your credit card information, financial information, or passwords to someone who claims to be from tech support; and (3) learn how to protect your computer from malware. If you think you may be a victim of a tech support scam, let the FTC know at its ( website.
For more personal finance tips and guides, visit the ( Money Center.

Small Pay Cuts Now Big Cuts in 2016
Military folks will see compensation packages pinched in 2015 under a deal struck this week by House and Senate negotiators finalizing pay and benefit changes in the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill. But the compensation pinch in 2015 could become a more hurtful punch starting in 2016, the armed services committees warn, if the new Congress fails to rollback defense spending cuts of $50 billion a year still mandated by the Budget Control Act with its "sequestration" cutting tool.
( ... ot-lifted/) Read more in this week's edition of the Military Update.

Military Pay Raise Set at 1 Percent
The 2015 National Defense Authorization Act that will soon go before the full Senate and House includes a roll back in the statutory 1.8 percent troop pay raise to ( ... ay,00.html) 1 percent, higher co-pays for prescriptions filled at off-base pharmacies, and a curb on ( ... rates.html) basic allowances for housing -- BAH -- by 1 percent next year. The pay and benefit cuts are included in the overall $521 billion budget package. In addition, the NDAA includes $64 billion for the overseas contingency fund -- the budget for U.S. combat operations. ( ... omise.html) Read the full article on

Some veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have specially-trained Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers to rely on. The nonprofit organization Paws4Pets provides these dogs to veterans suffering from PTSD. The dogs are trained to push elevator buttons and turn on and off light switches. The dog can even fetch a beverage from the refrigerator. The dogs are trained to recognize the onset of a panic attack and warn the veteran. The dogs are also trained to go and find someone to help the veteran. For more information, visit the ( ... t-program/) Paws4Vets webpage and follow ( Paws4Vets on Facebook.
For more articles related to PTSD, visit ('s PTSD section.

NORAD Preparing to Track Santa
The North American Aerospace Defense Command's NORAD Tracks Santa website, (, launched Dec. 1, featuring a mobile version, a holiday countdown, new games and daily activities and more. The website is available in eight languages. Official NORAD Tracks Santa apps are also available in the Windows, Apple and Google Play stores. Starting at 12:01 a.m. MST on Dec. 24, website visitors can watch Santa make preparations for his flight. NORAD's "Santa Cams" will stream videos on the website as Santa makes his way over various locations. Then, at 4 a.m. MST (6 a.m. EST), trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator to inquire as to Santa's whereabouts by dialing the toll-free number 1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) or by sending an email to (
For more on military-related entertainment news, visit the ( Off-duty section.

Legion Launches New Employment Center
The American Legion has launched a new web platform to help those who served in uniform translate military skills to job skills, find employment, start businesses and make successful transitions. Among the key features of The American Legion's Veteran Employment Center are: (1) a Military Skills Translator and Veteran Job Search tool, powered by; (2) ten custom-produced videos to help veterans start and succeed in business; (3) a listing of American Legion-sponsored or produced veteran career fairs nationwide, with links to registration sites; and (4) links to important forms, sites and agency platforms that help veterans in the career search. For more information, visit the American Legion's Veteran Employment Center webpage at (
For more veteran job news, job postings and transition advice, visit the ( Veteran Jobs Center.

Beware of Carjacking Scam
The U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID) is warning service members about a new carjacking scam targeting unsuspecting holiday shoppers. Criminals will place a $100 bill, usually on an individual's windshield under the wiper blade, and while the victim is distracted and gets out to retrieve the cash, the criminals use the element of surprise to approach the vehicle and rob the victim of their belongings and car. Should anyone discover money on their vehicle, they should quickly move to a safe, public location and notify law enforcement or security personnel immediately. Lock your doors, and do not get out of the vehicle to retrieve the bill. For more information on CID or to report a felony-level crime or provide information concerning a crime, contact your local CID Office or the Military Police, or visit the U.S. Army CID website at (
For more personal finance tips and guides, visit the ( Money Center.
Boardman 8)
"See You On The Other Side"

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