• MetroWest Veterans Initiative

  • Message from John Stone

    As 2012 comes to a close I am able to reflect back to our efforts as a Chamber and the assistance we have provided to our deserving Veterans.  We continued to take our efforts to a new level with Social Media, reaching soldiers about to be discharged and Veterans across the globe.  At any one time we have been working directly with 10 or more Veterans and many agencies providing services. 

    This year I was able to attend and participate in a discussion with Lt. Governor Murray and the Military Asset and Security Strategy Task Force and was able to assist Veterans Inc. in securing funding from the SSVF Grant (Supportive Services for Veteran Families) to insure these monies reach Veterans and their families. This grant is in direct support for veterans at risk for homelessness and requiring some assistance so they can pay their bills and maintain their living arrangements.  Our efforts were recognized via LinkedIn by the City of Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard who has duplicated our efforts to assist Veterans.

    This year saw a renewed effort with President Obama’s Warriors to Workforce and the Vow to Hire Act, but more still needs to be done.  It is projected that our 26 million Veterans will grow by an additional 10% within the next 2 years.  As members of the MetroWest Chamber, it is essential that we continue to support our Veterans as the needs of our veteran community expands.

    One item that we have received a great deal of feedback on is that Veterans do not know how to translate their military experience into employment in the civilian world.  You can assist Veterans by giving a Veteran’s resume a second read, taking the time to talk to them, and asking questions. You will find that the training and commitment they have made to our country can be a tremendous asset to your business.  If you are wondering how you can help, here are some practical options:

    • Hire a Veteran – if you have a job opening, contact John Stone (see below for contact information or contact the Chamber Office). John will forward the job description to agencies that service and pre-qualify Veterans.
    • If you review a Veteran’s resume, review it carefully and keep in mind what makes a good soldier – the ability to listen to instructions and respond appropriately, understanding the importance of taking direction yet providing leadership when necessary, and being a team player who understands the concept of sacrificing self for the good of all – these things are often highly desirable in an employee.
    • If you know of an unemployed Veteran – please connect them with John, or forward John’s information to the Veteran – this will include them on a daily email blast that includes job openings offering Veteran preference.
    • Remember Veterans when planning your annual donations whether it is a monetary donation or gently used clothing or your time. 

    We continue to mentor Veterans in a variety of ways including resume writing and mock job interviews and we assist Veterans who wish to start their own businesses. If you’d like to assist in any of these efforts, please let us know!   I’d like to thank the many people who stepped forward this year to assist our veteran community and I look forward to working with you in 2013 as we continue to lead the charge in returning our veterans to the full benefits of civilian life.

    John Stone

    John’s contact information:

    John A. Stone
    TCG Network Services

    Phone: 508-650-9917 x 314 | fax: 508-655-3485

    jstone@tcgns.com | www.tcgns.com

    or Contact the Chamber directly to help support our Initiative or with any questions.

    Veterans have bravely served our country and have proven that they are reliable, diligent and always ready to get the job done.  A little help goes a long way...so let’s give back to those who have given so much.

    The MetroWest Chamber of Commerce’s Veteran’s Initiative...helping to give our hero’s a bright new start.

     

  • Veterans Resources, programs, helpful links and more..

    Veterans On-Line Application (VONAPP) Use Veterans On Line Application's (VONAPP) extensive online catalog to select and complete online forms for Compensation, Pension, Education, Burial and Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment benefits.

    MassVetsAdvisor.org a new web portal to help veterans and their family members access more than 200 state and federal benefits in one location. MassVetsAdvisor provides access to programs for education, counseling, employment, health care and other services.

    www.mass.gov/veterans  The Official Website of the Department of Veterans' Services. The mission of the Department of Veterans’ Services (DVS) is to be the chief advocate for the nearly half-million veterans of the Commonwealth and their families. DVS establishes policy, proposes legislation, ensures that adequate funding for veterans’ programs is included in the Governor’s budget, and represents the interests of veterans in matters coming before the General Court. In addition, DVS represents all state agencies and individual veterans before the federal Department of Veterans Affairs in securing federal compensation and other benefits that might be available.

    Veteran's Inc.  Serving Veterans and their Families across the United States

    Headquartered in Massachusetts, Veterans Inc. is the largest provider of services to veterans and their families in New England. Since 1991, they have helped more than 40,000 veterans and their families. Operations are expanding further into New England and beyond in their goal of eradicating homelessness among veterans.

    If you are a veteran in need of services, please call (800) 482-2565, 24 hours a day, or stop by agency headquarters at 69 Grove Street, Worcester, MA.

    Hiring Our Heros, a program of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, launched in March 2011 as a nationwide initiative to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment opportunities. Working with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s vast network of state and local chambers and strategic partners from the public, private, and non-profit sectors, our goal is to create a movement across America in hundreds of communities where veterans and military families return every day.  Click Here for upcoming Hiring Fairs