Most veterans know that they are eligible for a range of benefits due to their military service. The tricky part for some is accessing those benefits. By reaching out to local San Jose resources, vets in the area can get help applying for health care, housing, and employment benefits and fully understanding what is included in these programs.
The majority of veterans who have served are eligible for the VA healthcare program, although not all realize it. Generally, vets who served in any branch and have a discharge that isn’t dishonorable, as well as National Guard and Reservist members who completed their service period are able to apply to receive VA healthcare. Applications are sorted by priority group and eligibility levels are determined based on your group.
The VA Palo Alto Health Care System administers healthcare to the local veteran community through several community clinics, including the San Jose CBOC. The facility offers a variety of by-appointment services to vets including primary care, physical and occupational therapy, pulmonary, and diabetic services. Their mental health care program also includes treatments for substance abuse and addiction. Veteran caregivers can utilize the social work department for access to support groups and programs, as well as in-home primary and hospice care options.
The City Council website for San Jose has a helpful list of resources in the area for vets searching for housing benefits. Included in the links are properties that offer temporary and emergency housing for vets, as well as these benefits programs:
Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing- Also known as the VASH program, it provides rental assistance for vets who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless
Home loan programs with discounted rates for vets looking to purchase a home
Home repair and home improvement loans at discounted rates
The Homeless Veterans Emergency Housing Facility also offers programs for vets who are homeless or at risk of losing their home, as well as shelter and meals. They have 125 beds available for vets, and also have in-house social workers, provide access to VA health services, and offer employment resources to help vets transition back into independent living.
Veterans who need access to a caregiver, as well as a housing solution, can apply for the Medical Foster Home program. Participants are matched with a caregiver who has been fully vetted and approved by the VA that provides a room in their private residence home. The caregiver will assist the vet with daily activities, as well as provide meals and transportation when required.
For additional help, vets can also contact the San Jose Vet Center who will provide a variety of outreach, counseling, and referral services that can help vets access their benefits. The Santa Clara County Office of Veterans Services and the California Department of Veteran’s Affairs can provide assistance with understanding your benefits and helping you apply.
Veterans searching for employment opportunities can reach out to one of the many California agencies who specialize in job placement and career counseling for vets.
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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