Military veterans who have completed their service are likely entitled to benefits through the VA and other St. Louis nonprofits. Determining eligibility and applying for benefits isn’t always a simple process. Luckily, vets in the city and county can reach out to many different resources who can help decipher the details about veteran health care programs, housing benefits, and resources for job placement. Here are a few good places to start.
The VA healthcare program provides a variety of services to qualified veterans, including primary and mental health care. The best part is, most vets are eligible to receive benefits. In order to qualify, vets must have served and been discharged (not dishonorably), or completed their federal service period as part of the National Guard or the Reserves. Once the application is completed, veterans are placed in a priority group to determine eligibility and coverage.
The St. Louis VA Healthcare System has two area locations to serve vets, the John Cochran Division near the city on Grand Blvd, and the Jefferson Barracks Division in the county. Included in the numerous services are a senior clinic, primary care services, emergency care, mental health and substance abuse care and treatment, hospice programs, and support for caregivers who take care of veterans. The healthcare system also offers a variety of specialized treatments for vets with advanced illnesses and medical needs, as well as in-home and palliative care options.
St. Louis County has used funding from Missouri Veterans Commission, Veterans Service Officer Grant to compile the ultimate resource for veterans in the area. The 107 page Veterans Resource Directory compiles all of the information on programs and services available in the city and county, who to contact, how to apply, and all the details you need to know. Included in the directory are details on housing programs available to vets like:
Housing Choice Voucher Program (also known as HUD or Section 8)
Home loan options for down payment
Rehabilitative and short-term housing options for veterans
Home accessibility and home improvement loan programs
The St. Louis VA also offers an emergency assistance program for area vets who face unforeseen circumstances and are at risk of becoming homeless. The program is open to both men and women and can provide shelter for up to 90 days. The VA also coordinates a number of outreach programs and provides counselors to assist homeless veterans get back on their feet.
Another option for veterans who need a housing solution and who also need a little day to day assistance is the VA Medical Foster Home program. Participants in the program are placed in a private residence with a caregiver who has been vetted by the VA. Vets will live in the home with the family and the caregiver will provide needed assistance like preparing meals and providing transportation to medical appointments.
St. Louis vets also have one of the Regional Benefit Offices right in their backyard. The office is home to one of eight national call centers, one one of four locations that process G.I. Bill Benefits. The office provides a whole host of additional services to vets, their families, and survivors including assistance with education, insurance, loan programs, pensions, compensation, and employment services.
For more information on the Aid & Attendance Benefit and to learn how it can help pay for assisted living, please visit VeteranAid.org.
Find assisted living in St. Louis near you.