Dallas Veterans Support Groups
Dallas County is home to more than 120,000 US military veterans, including more than 43,000 age 65 and older. These seniors who’ve served can get help with housing, tax breaks, counseling, transportation, and health care from Dallas-based, state, and national groups. Some of these organizations also connect vets to social activities, fitness classes, and workshops on financial safety. Here’s a brief rundown of what’s available in and around Dallas for vets.
Local veterans resources in Dallas
The Dallas VA Medical Center provides geriatric, cardiac, mental health, and other care for veterans. The center, at 4500 South Lancaster in far south Dallas, is accessible by DART’s Blue Line rail service to the station at the medical center. Valet parking service is available at the main entrance for patients with handicapped parking tags who need help. Shuttle buses run from the VA’s parking lots and garages to the center during regular weekday work hours.
Dallas County Veteran Services helps vets and surviving spouses apply for benefits and file claims, find veterans’ homes, learn about home loan programs, and get help with emergency situations like the prospect of homelessness.
The Veterans Resource Center, just a few blocks away from the Dallas VA Medical Center, provides help for vets who need legal aid, want to attend community college classes, need help with a job search, or need counseling. The VRC is run by Homeless Veterans Services of Dallas, and it provides day services and counseling for vets who are homeless or at risk of losing their housing.
Statewide resources for Dallas vets
The Texas Veterans Commission oversees state programs that help vets with employment, education, and benefits claims. The commission funds selected non-profit groups that serve veterans, including the Dallas Veterans Resource Center. It also serves as an advocate for veterans who experience difficulty accessing VA health care; vets who need help can contact the Texas Veterans Health Care Advocacy Team. The team includes an advocate based in Dallas.
Dallas chapters of national veteran support organizations
There are 5 Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) posts in Dallas and more in other Metroplex cities. The VFW’s service officers are trained to help veterans and surviving spouses navigate the VA benefits and claims process. They are authorized to help research, file, re-open and appeal claims on behalf of veterans and survivors. The service is free to those who need it.
VFW posts also serve as social hubs for vets and their friends and families. For example, John Franklin Sprague VFW Post 6796 near White Rock Lake offers regular karaoke nights, line dancing lessons, and other fun events.
Depression and PTSD can affect people at any age, but veterans and seniors—especially older men—are at particular risk. The National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) chapter in Dallas offers support and suicide prevention services through its Veteran’s Activity Network. To contact the Veteran’s Crisis Line for help in a dire situation, call 800-273-8255 and select 1 from the menu.
Recognition for Dallas veterans
Each November on Veterans’ Day, the Greater Dallas Veterans Foundation hosts a parade through downtown that includes veterans, reservists, active-duty military members, school marching bands, and state and local leaders. More than 100 veterans’ and community groups participate in the spectacle each year. To volunteer, participate, or just plan to get a good seat for the next event, visit the Dallas Veterans’ Day Parade website.
For more information on the Aid & Attendance Benefit and to learn how it can help pay for assisted living, please visit VeteranAid.org.
Learn more about Dallas Senior Services:
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- Dallas Rehab Centers
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- Dallas Volunteer Opportunities for Seniors
- Dallas Hospitals
- Things to Do in Dallas
- Senior-Friendly Workplaces in Dallas
- How to Get Around Dallas Without Driving
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