My office places a high priority on assisting veterans in Eastern North Carolina as they navigate the resources available to them. The men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces have never given up when defending American freedoms and ideals, and we owe them the same steadfast commitment.
The best place to start to learn about benefits available to veterans is the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) website. There, you can find the VA’s Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependents and Survivors booklet and even apply for VA benefits online
VA regional offices can also assist you with filing the appropriate VA forms. The North Carolina VA Regional Office is located in Winston-Salem. Additionally, the North Carolina Division of Veterans Affairs (NCDVA) offers assistance to North Carolina veterans through a network of District and County Veterans Service Offices. Every county in the 7th Congressional District of North Carolina has a County or District Service Officer(s) that can provide assistance to veterans and their families to establish claims and benefits that they may be entitled to under federal, state or local laws.
Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs) also provide general information to veterans, can answer general questions for you, and even petition the VA on your behalf for services they believe you are qualified to receive. Some VSOs include
• AMVETS Ladies Auxiliary
• The American Legion
• American Legion Auxiliary
• Disabled American Veterans
• Fleet Reserve Association
• Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America
• Marine Corps League
• Military Officers Association of America
• Military Order of the Purple Heart
• Navy League of the United States
• Paralyzed Veterans of America
• Veterans of Foreign Wars
• Vietnam Veterans of America
Veterans Health Services
I remain committed to improving and expanding the veterans’ health services available in Southeastern North Carolina. The current veterans’ health facilities located in and around the Seventh District include the Fayetteville VA Medical Center, the Durham VA Medical Center, the Wilmington Community Based Outpatient Clinic, and the Fayetteville Vet Center where veterans and their families can receive peer-to-peer counseling and other types of mental health therapy. I have also secured final plans and confirmed a location for a new VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic in Robeson County and have secured final approval and a location for a 100,000 square foot VA Super Clinic to be built and opened in New Hanover County.
Veterans Education Benefits
Honorably discharged veterans, members of reserve elements of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard, and members of the Army and the Air National Guard, their survivors, and dependents are eligible to receive VA education benefits. You can learn more about the education benefits that North Carolina has to offer at Military.com. Additionally, the American Council on Education has created Today’s GI Bill, a website that contains information on the new education benefits available to veterans, the college selection process, and how to succeed in higher education.
Job and Business Resources for Veterans
There are also many resources at the local, state, and federal level for veterans who want to begin a new career. Troops to Teachers is an effective program through the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Defense that provides counseling and referral services to military personnel interested in beginning a second career in public education as a teacher.
The North Carolina Military Business Center is a business development entity of the North Carolina Community College System, headquartered at Fayetteville Technical Community College (FTCC). NCMBC’s “I Hire Military” initiative helps transitioning military personnel and family members identify military-friendly employers in North Carolina.
Additionally, the Office of Veterans Business Development at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is dedicated to helping veterans, service-disabled veterans, reserve component members, and their dependents or survivors navigate the SBA’s small business programs. A Veterans Business Outreach Center will soon be opening at Fayetteville State University.
Within the VA, the Center for Veterans Enterprise (CVE) is dedicated to assisting veterans in starting and building businesses. CVE maintains vetbiz.gov, a website that serves as the federal government’s portal for veteran-owned businesses.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of resources for veterans who want to access local, state, and federal resources. I encourage you to continue to explore the many opportunities that exist for our veterans, and if you have any questions or concerns, my office is here to help! If you are a resident of the 7th Congressional District of North Carolina and are having difficulties navigating the VA, please contact my office. My staff is experienced and dedicated to assisting you. Although I have no role in the decision-making process of federal agencies, my office will work to ensure that you receive full and fair consideration in a timely manner. In order for my office to contact the VA on your behalf, you will be required to complete and sign the VA Privacy Act Release Form.