Texas is home to nearly 1.7 million veterans, with over 153,000 of them living in San Antonio and throughout Baxter County. The large population of vets throughout the state means access to community-based programs as well as state and federal assistance for these individuals. Vets may qualify for benefits that assist with housing needs, health care, taxes, and counseling services. Community organizations also serve veterans in the neighborhood and offer social gatherings, classes and educational information on important topics, and group fitness programs for retired service members. Below we’ll summarize some of the best resources for veterans in the area who can help make the most of the benefits available to you.
The South Texas Veterans Health Care System (STVHCS) has two area locations, one right in San Antonio, and provides health care services to over 80,000 veterans throughout the area. The Audie L. Murphy VA Hospital, located in the city at 7400 Merton Minter, offers a full spectrum of health care services including medical, surgical, rehabilitation, mental health, primary and geriatric. The state-of-the-art facility also includes specialized treatment facilities like a spinal cord injury center and a residential rehabilitation treatment program for those with substance abuse issues.
Closer to home, the Bexar County Veterans Service Office in San Antonio takes appointments for benefits counseling and referral services. They can assist with housing solutions, home loans, employment, education, burial benefits, tax benefits, and placing a vet in need in the homeless veterans program.
Additionally, the San Antonio Coalition for Veterans connects vets with supporters in the community who are ready and willing to help with needs beyond government provided benefits.
The Texas Veterans Commission was established to help retired military throughout the state access their benefits through their four core program areas. The Commission provides claims representation and counseling, employment services, education programs, and a fund for veterans assistance that provides grants to local community organizations who serve vets and their families.
Veterans of Foreign Wars is a prominent community organization throughout San Antonio. With 13 posts in the city, the VFW is a great resource for vets who need help with the benefits application or claims dispute process. Service Officers at the posts can advocate directly on behalf of a vet or a surviving family member at no charge to help secure benefits and resolve claims. Posts are also known for their fun, social activities that bring together retired service men and women in the community. Reach out to one nearest you to learn about upcoming events and opportunities to meet new friends.
Vets suffering from depression or PTSD can look to the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill San Antonio chapter for support groups and resources in the community. Those struggling with suicidal thoughts can call the Veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline any time of the day or night dialing 1-800-273-8255.
Annually, the U.S. Military Veterans Parade Association produces the Veterans Day Parade every November as part of San Antonio’s Celebrate America’s Military (CAM) Week. Marching in the parade are vets from all branches of service, school ROTC groups, VFW posts, and businesses and associations in the community who want to honor the area veterans. For details, or to get involved, visit the website.
For more information on the Aid & Attendance Benefit and to learn how it can help pay for assisted living, please visit VeteranAid.org.
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