Once you’ve been in the military, returning back to the city and the everyday lifestyle can at first seem like crossing into no man’s land. Returning to civilian life will, and understandably so, require certain adjustments.
The guide is separated in the following sections, you can see them all or jump onto what interests you.
- Self-Employment & Business Start
- Jobs and Job Boards
- Training and Qualifications
- Financial Advice
- Scholarships for Disabled Veterans
- Health Assistance for Veterans
- Transition to Civilian Life
Housing Programs & Grants
Finding the right house is hard, even more so when you’re coming home from abroad, especially if you haven’t been home for a while. Let’s take a look at the resources available for veterans when it comes to housing and accommodation:
1. Housing and Urban Development-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) Program
HUD-VASH is a collaborative program between the Housing and Urban Development and Veteran Affairs. It combines HUD housing vouchers with VA supportive services to help Veterans who are homeless or might become on soon. It can help them and their families find and sustain permanent housing.
HUD-VASH provides private lettings through public housing authorities whilst the VA connects veterans with support services such as health care, substance abuse counseling or mental health treatment. This helps with any recovery, veterans may require to maintain their ability to live in public housing.
- More Info – Click Here
- Eligibility – https://www.va.gov/homeless/hud-vash_eligibility.asp
- Find your nearest center: – Click Here
- HUD for Native American Programs – Click Here
2. Veteran’s Affairs Housing Assistance
The Veteran Administration offers housing assistance for veterans, service assistance, and their spouses to buy a home or refinance a loan. It is also an option to get assistance for any building, improvement, or keeping a current home.
Surely, it might take a while and you need to find out if you’re eligible, however, if you’re not, you shouldn’t worry, as there are many more options!
3. Grant and Per Diem Program – Transition In Place (TIP) NOFA
The NOFA initiative provides nearly $40 million to eligible organizations to provide transitional housing beds utizing the TIP housing model for Veterans.
5. Permanent Housing in The Community Project
This program is designed for veterans who don’t require a structured program to maintain permanent housing. They can benefit from continuing supportive services such as rental case management, job assistance or therapeutic and support groups on-site.
6. USA Cares Housing Assistance Program
USA Cares have created a housing assistance program for ex-military who are struggling to pay rent or are facing eviction.
Prior to any grants being awarded to individuals and/or families, all vets must attend a free budget counseling to discuss the individual’s finances.
7. SSVF – Supportive Services For Veteran Families
Supportive services grants have been awarded to selected private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives that will assist very low-income Veteran families residing in or transitioning to permanent housing.
Grantees provide eligible Veteran families with outreach, case management, and assistance in obtaining VA and other benefits, which may include: Health care, Daily living, Fiduciary and payee services and more.
8. PATH – California Only
PATH (People Assisting the Homeless) offers support to homeless veterans transitioning from homelessness to a thriving life into a home of their own.
9. National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
The NCHV is the center for a national network of community-powered service providers and agencies that offer emergency and supportive housing for veterans. It can help veterans find emergency shelter, food and housing.
10. Military One Source
11. Other Resources:
Self-Employment And Starting A Business
Self-Employment is a fantastic option for veterans who are returning to civilian life. There are many self-employment options: you can start a digital or physical business, start trading or simply become a sole trader whilst offering a service to communities in your area. If require funding or strategic assistance, here are a few places which can help you on the journey:
1. Self-Employment Grants for Service-Disabled Veteran
The Veteran Administration offers a self-employment program for service-disabled veterans. In order to be considered for this program, interested candidates are asked to prepare and submit:
- a business plan
- specific funding estimates.
2. Government Set-Aside Funding
The US government usually sets aside a portion of contracts awarded to the private sector to help small business owned by women, minorities and disabled people. If you are a service-disabled veteran you can qualify for funding through one these programs.
3. Veterans Business Resource Center
The VetBiz.com helps veterans transition to civillian life by empowering them to use the skills learned in the military to apply themselves in the business world.
4. Office of Veterans Business Development
The SBA is keen on promoting veteran entrepreneurship, therefore the OBVD oversees Veterans Business Outreach Centers across the country. They offer business plan workshops, concept assessments, mentorship and training for eligible veterans.
This may include veterans, service-disabled veterans, active-duty service members, transitioning service members, reservists and dependents or survivors. The program provides access to capital and preparation of small business ideas and opportunities. Furthermore, there is online training proposed for veterans who wish to succeed but don’t have sufficient knowledge.
5. Boots To Business
The Boots to Business program is an entrepreneurial education and training program offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration as part of the Department of Defense Transition Assistance Program.
It’s fantastic as it offers prior and continuous assistance on the business ownership journey. There is everything a veteran needs to know to start and maintain a business. The courses are prepared in partnership with the Mississippi State University and there are no costs for service members, veterans and military spouses.
You can register for the classes online
V-WISE (Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship) is a training program for women veterans, and they train in entrepreneurship and small business management. The program is operated by the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University and funding comes partly through the U.S Small Business Administrations.
V-WISE helps women veterans, as well as military spouses find what their passion is and learn the business skills required to turn an idea into a growing business.
The program has three phases which include a 15-day online course (Phase I), a 3-day entrepreneurship training event (Phase II), and ongoing mentorship, training, and support opportunities for graduates who launch or grow their business.
7. Warrior Rising Entrepreneur Help
Warrior Rising is an organisation which assists veterans in achieving their entrepreneur ventures. Warrior Rising was founded in Utah by former military veterans and their aim is to assist all veterans who wish to achieve certain things after the military and start their own business.
Warrior Rising is a non-profit organization dedicated to assist veterans in achieving success in business. Their process goes through assessing the needs of a veteran who wishes to become an entrepreneur, followed by assessing the obstacles the individual is facing and how they can be overcome.
They offer instruction, mentoring, funding opportunities, as well as reconnecting to the sense of community. Warrior Rising is a fantastic place for any veteran who wishes to take on business.
8. VAMBOA – Veterans & Military Business Owners Association
The VAMBOA is a thorough resource on of all things connected to vet and military owned businesses. The mission of VAMBOA is to ensure the development, growth and prosperity of companies owned by veterans.
9. Vet to CEO
The VET to CEO initiative is a program that helps veterans discover entrepreneurship as an alternative to jobs and a potential career path for vets. It is non-profit to help veterans to transition from active military duty to a successful business ownership.
10. National Veteran SMB Coalition
The national veteran small business organization, as the name suggests, support veteran-owned small business. It promotes policies to encourage federal contractors to support small businesses and offer them opportunities.
Find out more on their website
BusinessUSA is a valuable resource for all things business related, including loans for military and veterans, DoD small business grants and other resources:
12. NaVOBA Association
The National Veteran-Owned Business Association is a program that supports opportunities for veterans that requires a membership. The association works as a watchdog to hold the federal government accountable to its veteran contractor mandates. Likewise, it encourages large businesses to work with veteran-owned small business vendors.
You can find more opportunities here:
- Federal Business Opportunities
- Veteran Entrepreneur Portal
- Veteran Fast Launch Initiative
- 21 Gun Salute Initiative
- Patriot Boot Camp
Veteran Jobs and Job Boards
We understand that starting a business is not for everyone. If you’re interested in a job instead, here are a few job boards and opportunities available specifically to veterans:
1. Feds Hire Vets
This is a website for veterans, which is an extension of the Federal Government. Here you can find recruitment and employment opportunities, directed for ex-military, if you are interested in a federal career.
This site supports service members who are still in transition, veterans, as well as family members of active duty military and veterans. This is a fantastic opportunity to align the skills you acquired while in the military to key Federal Government positions.
Currently, there are approximately 31% of Veterans working as a part of the Federal workforce.
2. Military Hire
Military Hire is a network for the military people looking for employment. That includes veterans and service members who are looking to find job opportunities after the military.
Militaryhire.com is a platform where former military personnel can accommodate their talents by looking for a job that suits them and their geographical location. You can search for jobs and apply for as many suitable jobs you can find. They offer contacts and resources you might need for a successful transition to civilian life. Their motto is to “Serve those who Served.”
3. Hire Heroes USA
Hire Heroes USA helps veterans, service member and military spouses find new careers. They propose personalized service and support to help veterans and military spouses get hired, whilst assisting companies in the hiring process and the retaining of veteran employees.
Hire Heroes USA is a non-profit organization with over 43 thousand hires and over 15 thousand jobs on board. They have numerous partners that assist in the smooth transition of the military to the civilian workforce.
4. Veteran Job Boards on the Military.com website
Military.com offers a job board where veterans can seek veteran friendly jobs across the country. Furthermore, they offer resume writing assistance, as well as job fair event information and assistance with interview skills.
Military.com is the largest veteran and military membership organization with over 10 million members. There are also a variety of articles that can assist you with the transition to civilian life.
5. Hire Veterans
Once you have a resume that has been looked at and seems to be in order, HireVeterans.com is a fantastic platform for finding job opportunities and connecting with employers.
Once registering on the website, you have access to the employers and the employers have access to you. They offer an incredible amount of jobs by companies in the USA or abroad. It is one of the top websites for finding employment after the military.
VetJobs.com offers over 60,000 job placements for veterans in the USA. They are one of the leading job boards for military-related opportunities and they assist you to find the correct job, as well as employers, find the correct employee.
They try to meet the shortage of qualified candidates in the civilian sector with highly trained veterans who can offer technical skills, management expertise, and leadership.
7. Rally Point – The Military Network
Rally Point is a leading digital platform for the military community which aims to help service members lead more fulfilling lives after the military. It’s a place where the military comes together and discusses military topics both socially and professionally.
Members include military service members, veterans, family, caregivers, survivors, and military supporters. RallyPoint provides tools for success – from recruit through to retirement, as well as the opportunity to build personal and professional relationships with like-minded individuals.
Veteran Training, Qualifications and Education
Simply because you have been in uniform, doesn’t mean that you cannot continue educating yourself. There are many options for training and qualifications – some of which may be connected to your experience, whilst others might assist you in continuing life after the military. Whichever one you choose, learning is a part of life that never stops; therefore, you shouldn’t stop yourself from it.
The AMU offers all kinds of degree programs, as well as online ones, for ex-military members who wish to continue their education. There are many opportunities, however, in order to learn more, you need to send in a personal inquiry, which is great as you receive a personalized answer, for that which interests you.
2. Onward to Opportunity
Onward to Opportunity is a free career training program which provides professional certification and employee support services to veterans, service members and military spouses.
O2O provides industry-validated curriculum and career coaching services to prepare and match you with your next career.
3. Department Of Energy Scholarship for Vets
Veteran college students or recent graduates may intern seasonally or year round. Includes Energy Management and Intelligence programs for veterans.
4. Pathways Program
The Pathways program is a federal internship and employment opportunities for current students, recent graduates, and those with an advanced degree.
Wounded, ill, and injured military service members may intern to develop military skills in preparation to transition into civilian occupations
6. Troops to Energy Jobs
Troops to energy jobs can help vets transition into careers in the energy industry. That can include new source of energy, renewable energy and more.
Helps veterans start new careers in the exciting and evolving energy sector.
8. Cisco Military and Veterans Programs
Cisco partners to create training and job opportunities for military and veterans who wish to have a career in technology. They include IT training and employment programs which create pathways to careers in technology.
The Veteran Talent Incubation Program offers veterans and military spouses access to free CCNA training and certification, as well as the opportunity to get hired into networking roles at Cisco.
Veterans4Veterans aim to empower veterans, service members, active and transitioning military and their family and spouses. This is done by the free online training which is proposed as well as free coaching and education programs.
Scholarships can be received for courses, which has been received by government or public support through donations. There are courses which create business ownership opportunities alongside many others.
10. Other Training And Qualification Resources:
- Cybersecurity for vets
- VET TEC Training – Technology Education Courses
- Apprenti – Trains veterans and military spouses
- CareerOneStop Veteran and Military Transition Center
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring our Heroes
- Military Reboot Camp
- Women Who Served
- Dept of Labor Transition Assistance Program
- Georgia Tech OMSCS
- Explore Nanodegrees
- Udacity Courses
- Veterans’ Employment & Training Service (VETS)
Financial Advice & Coaching For Vets
If you are looking for assistance with finances and aren’t sure where to go, there are many organisations which offer such advice, however not many of them are free. If you would like to go for the most secure way of receiving financial advice, we’d propose the following.
1. Veteran Affairs
The VA offers free financial consulting, and you can request a financial plan 24/7 by simply heading online. Furthermore, the VA provides veterans with independent living assistance, by ensuring each veteran is capable of taking care of themselves and their families. I
f you are in need of mortgage assistance, the VA can provide you with this free of charge. If you are looking for any other type of financial help, don’t hesitate and contact the department to request further information on your queries.
2. Veterans Plus
VeteransPlus is a program which aims to educate all military personnel with handling finances. Many veterans worry about finances and calm living and they lack the knowledge needed for handling personal finances.
That’s why VeteransPlus has created education, coaching and financial literacy programs to assist veterans in achieving financial freedom. Their aim is to help improve the quality of life for those who have worn out their uniform and are getting back to civilian life.
3. Military One Source
Military OneSource offer counselling in person, over the phone and online for those military or ex-military who are struggling in handling their finances. Financial counselling gives the opportunity to talk to a professional about any existing issues or situations that you are worried might occur in future. Financial counselling is important for everyone, not just veterans, that’s why it’s important to get help on time.
4. Military & Veteran Debt Relief Options
Veterans and active military sometimes struggle with mortgages, auto loans and credit card debt the same as civilian consumers. Bills can pile up while you’re deployed or if you’re a vet and just lost a job. Find out what debt relief options are available to you.
Vet Financial Freedom is an investment services platform for vets by vets. As usual, be careful with investing as you can lose money.
Scholarships for Disabled Veterans
Many military members have been in an unfortunate event that has led to a disability. And despite good wishes, a disability can stay a part of your life for a long time. However, it’s incredibly important to not look at your disability as a drawback, because you don’t become any less worthy even with a disability.
We have found a couple of scholarships suitable for disabled veterans, which can help you find your path after the military.
1. Disabled American Veterans
Disabled American Veterans provide grants, scholarships and financial aid for disabled aids and their spouses and families.
2. Paralyzed Veterans of America
Paralyzed Veterans of America helps veterans who have become paralyzed or disabled whilst on duty. They offer help through grants, scholarships and financial aid for children under the age of 24 of paralyzed veterans, spouses and families.
3. American Red Cross
American Red Cross offers financial assistance 24/7, 365 days a year. They aim to help the military and their families by offering aid through donations and funds the organization has raised.
4. Veterans of Foreign Wars
Veterans of Foreign Wars offers financial help to veterans who are experiencing financial difficulty due to injuries and disabilities caused while on duty. They offer help to veterans, service members and families.
5. AMVETS (American Veterans)
AMVETS offers scholarships as well as entrepreneur grants to veterans and their spouses who are in need. They have scholarships for active-duty members and veterans. Furthermore, children and grandchildren can apply for scholarships that are distinctive from the ones service members receive.
Health Assistance for Veterans
Whether you are a disabled, blind or adult veteran and you’re in need of health assistance, there is existing support for you. Furthermore, there is support for carers of veterans and their families.
1. Veteran Disability Benefits
The American government provides benefits for ex-military who have a disability caused whilst on duty. These include compensation, benefits, pensions, and grants for veterans with service-connected health issues.
Furthermore, they propose pensions for veterans over the age of 65 and grants for veterans with age-related disabilities. Each situation would require different benefits; therefore, you would need to request whatever is appropriate for your case.
2. Vehicle Modifications and Training for Veterans with Disabilities
If you have been disabled while on duty, you can apply for vehicle modification benefits, as well as training to ensure driving can continue being a part of your life.
3. The Wounded Warrior Project
The Wounded Warrior Project focuses on veterans and service members who have been injured physically or mentally while serving in the military on or after September 11, 2001. They are a charitable organization that focuses on assisting injured veterans.
4. Veteran Programs
Veteran Programs offer compensation programs for soldiers who have been injured while on duty. Programs provide a range of pensions, social support, compensation to assist you going back to civilian life.
5. The American Psychological Association
The American Psychological Association provides health service psychologists who provide the appropriate mental and behavioral health care services for veterans, service members, and their families.
6. American Veterans Aid
The AVA provides tax-free benefits for entitled wartime veterans who are 65 years old, or older. The benefit is designed to provide financial aid for those who need daily assistance for everyday activities. The benefit is paid directly to you by the Department of Treasury and it may vary depending on you married status.
7. PTSD Alliance
If you suffer from PTSD or substance abuse, this may result in trust problems and issues within your family. That’s why PTSD Alliance offers support to those who suffer from a Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. You shouldn’t be ashamed of your issues, you should seek help, as we want to help you.
8. USA Cares
USA Cares provides assistance for veterans who have been injured while on duty. If you have a post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury or military sexual trauma, this program can pay for your treatment.
9. Veterans Inc.
Veterans Inc. Can help you with your health and wellness as they provide mental, physical, and emotional care that can assist veterans in developing coping mechanisms after deployment. This also helps veterans with reintegration into families and communities.
- http://www.axpow.org/ – American Ex-Prisoners of War
- http://www.bva.org Blid Veterans Association
Help With Transitioning to Civilian Life
Transitioning to civilian life might seem difficult, however it can be a fantastic experience. There are a range of veteran support groups around the country, all you need to do is search for the ones in your area. The community supports you and you will never stand alone.
VA Transition Assistance Program (TAP)
The Transition Assistance Program provides information, resources and tools for service members and their loved ones to help prepare from the move from military to civilian life. Service members begin TAP one year prior to separation, or two years prior to retiring.
- Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA)
- https://www.tapevents.org/ – find TAP Classes near you
- http://www.operationsecondchance.org – Operation Second Chance
- http://www.thefund.org – Semper Fi & America’s Fund
A Final Thank You
We understand that your journey has been a long and exhausting one and you might be stressing over the return to civilian life. That’s why we would like to help you as much as possible with your transition and support you on your way. There are many organisations which aim to assist veterans, who have been affected whilst on duty, therefore there are many options for you to receive help. We have summed up the current ones, however the list of organisations is a very long one. If there is something you are looking for, remember that the government might have assistance for you. If that is not the case, there are numerous non-profit organisations which aim to help veterans returning from duty and their families.
We are here for you and we would like to say thank you for your service and thank you for your continuous protection!
P.S. If you have a resource worth adding to this page, please contact Chip @primesurvivor.com.