Click here to access the online version of the Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors 2013 guide.
RCH VOPRESS RELEASE: -American Legion Post 44 - Bantam, CT 06750-0441
Do you know a Veteran who should be honored?
The Torrington Veterans Support Committee is seeking Nominations for Honorary Parade Marshals for this year’s Memorial Day Parade & Ceremony.
To nominate a Veteran, Submit
• Nominee’s Name, Address, Telephone #, and email (if available)
• Branch of Service, Rank, and Years served
• Brief reason for your nomination
• Your name and telephone#
• Be able to provide proof of Honorable Discharge (form DD-214)
Torrington Veterans Support Committee
Attn: Honorary Marshal 2014
140 Main St
Torrington, CT 06790
Or email to
firstname.lastname@example.org with the Subject: Honorary Marshal 2014
Deadline for Nominations: Friday April 11, 2014
• Nominee must be a resident of Torrington, and be willing and able to accept the honor, participate in the Parade, and be recognized during the Ceremony which takes place in Coe Park following the Parade.
• Posthumous nomination also accepted, family member(s) must participate.
Under certain conditions, about 33% of all seniors in this country could qualify for up to $2,019 a month in additional income from the Department of Veterans Affairs. This money can be used to pay just about anyone to provide elder care services at home. As an example, these funds can be used to pay children, other relatives, friends, home care companies, or domestic workers. Adequate documentation and evidence must be provided in order to receive money from VA for these services, particularly the services provided by Family Members or other non-professional providers. The National Care Planning Council furnishes detailed instructions and training to those practitioners who wish to help Veteran households receive this valuable source of revenue to pay for home care.
Space-A is short for “space available” travel on government owned or contracted aircraft. Under the Space-A program, eligible passengers can fill unused seats on DoD owned or contracted aircraft once all of the duty passengers have been accommodated. With patience and flexibility, you can travel the world very inexpensively.
The Global Assessment Tool (GAT) - A confidential, 125 item questionnaire that measures an individual’s psychological health and resilience using the five dimensions of strength. Users receive confidential feedback.
Applications for the 2013 Scholarships for Military Children Program are now available at commissaries worldwide, and also online at www.commissaries.com and www.militaryscholar.org.
The scholarship program awards at least $1,500 at each commissary. To be eligible to apply for a schol-arship, the student must be a dependent, unmarried child, younger than 21 (or 23, if enrolled as a full-time student at a college or university) of a Service Mem-ber on active duty, reservist, guardsman, retiree or survivor of a Military Member who died while on active duty, or survivor of a retiree.
Students with questions about the scholarship program application can call Scholarship Managers at 856-616-9311.
Military Family.org has two new kits “Military Kids” toolkit and “Military Teens” toolkit which can be ordered at no cost. These two kits are geared toward elementary school-age military children 6 to 11 years old. This is the second in a series from the National Military Family Association to give people in military kids’ lives - teachers, school counselors, coaches, community leaders, religious leaders, neighbors, Family friends, or relatives - a way to help them manage stress and affirm the positive aspects of military life.
The Defense Department launched a new resource to help troops and their Families plan for the “before, during and after” deploying.
When the child of a military sponsor is incapacitated, he or she may retain certain entitlements and benefits indefinitely, but only if the sponsor renews the child’s ID card every four years.
DoD Safe Helpline, operated by the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) on behalf of the Department of Defense, is a secure, anonymous and confidential crisis support service that connects members of the military community to sexual assault professionals for one-on-one support. RAINN will not share your name or any other personally identifying information with the Department of Defense (DoD) or your chain of command.
Access the DoD Safe Helpline 24/7 from anywhere in the world by calling 877-995-5247 or visiting the Safe Helpline website at www.safehelpline.org.
To find help near you, text your zip code, installation or base name to: 55-247 (in the U.S.) or 202-470-5546 (outside the U.S.)
The United States Postal Service (USPS) recently sent out a mandate that all letter mail being shipped to overseas military installations be addressed with a nine-digit zip code, starting January 2013. The policy change came with an upgrade to USPS’s mail sorting system and the opening of an additional centralized gateway for receiving and ship-ping all government mail. The new mail sorting system will enable mail to be delivered and sorted quicker by giving the sorting machines another way to divide up the mail. The new address format will include the box number as a four digit number at the end of the zip code.
Maryland has joined 33 other states in agreeing to waive the skills test for Veterans and Servicemembers who have mili-tary training that would entitle them to a commercial driver's license. A provision of the commercial learner's per-mit rule gives state driver licensing agencies the authority to substitute two years of commercial motor vehicle safe-driving experience in the military equivalents of commercial motor vehicles for the skills-test portion of the commercial driver license. The rule applies to active duty, Reserve, Guard and Coast Guard members, and Veterans within 90 days of separation. More states are considering such a waiver.
For more information, contact your state’s DMV.
By Brian Feeney
Asked if she felt something click at that point, she answered, “It’s not a click; it’s more like a nudge. As I teach the skills to others, I draw on my life for examples, and I feel myself become stronger. Through teaching and living resilience, I also feel myself providing a good example to my children,” she continued.
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that the State Department of Veterans’ Affairs has partnered with Veterans Advantage, Inc. on an initiative to extend private sector benefits to veterans and their families who reside in Connecticut through the VetRewards Card program.
The program provides special offers, such as discounts on services through a network of retailers and service providers. Funding from the program’s membership goes to the creation of a statewide scholarship program that will be awarded by the state Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
“The Veterans Advantage card is a way for private sector companies to extend their appreciation for our country’s troops by providing discounts on services while at the same time creating opportunities for military families to pursue higher education,” Governor Malloy said. “This is another way we can thank our nation’s veterans and their families.”
“I strongly believe that our troops and their families deserve our support not only when they are in uniform, but when they return home,” Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman said. “Deployment has meant many months away from their families and their jobs and this card is a great way to lend a hand to those who sacrificed so much for us.”
Veterans Advantage is a national program that partners with private corporations that want to do their part to honor and thank all who serve in the United States military. Partner companies, such as retail stores, restaurants and service providers, show their appreciation for the program’s members by providing discounts on their goods or services every day.
Interested Connecticut veterans, Active Duty Military, National Guard, Reserve and their family members are encouraged to enroll in the Veterans Advantage through the Connecticut Department of Veterans’ Affairs website (www.ct.gov/ctva), where they will be eligible to receive a special 25% discount on the program’s fees.
“There are tens of thousands of military veterans in the State of Connecticut and we are committed to recognizing them and their family members for their service with real benefits,” said Dr. Linda S. Schwartz, the Connecticut Commissioner of Veterans’ Affairs. “The VetRewards Card program offers a real benefits package from the nation’s top companies for returning troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, there is also important financial assistance for the transition back to civilian life. We encourage those who have served and their families to enroll,” she said.
“With our headquarters in the State of Connecticut, Veterans Advantage is honored to serve Connecticut veterans and their family members,” said Veterans Advantage founder and CEO H. Scott Higgins, a Vietnam Veteran and Connecticut resident. “The VetRewards Card discount and scholarship program represent our way to show our appreciation for the work of the Connecticut Department of Veterans’ Affairs in the care of our veterans. We thank Dr. Schwartz for all her help and support in forming this special initiative”
About Veterans Advantage Veterans Advantage, founded in 1999 by a group of high-ranking military veterans, is the leading card membership program offering exclusive benefits for the more than 90 million qualifying Americans from a nationwide network of retailers and service providers across the U.S. The program’s mission is to deliver greater recognition, respect and rewards as a thank you for service to the country through the VetRewards Card, a universal military service ID card, and in its partnerships with patriotic companies. Learn more at: www.VeteransAdvantage.com.
Pursuant to PA 12-195, an act concerning Fundraising by Veterans’
Organizations. Establishment of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs “charitable organizations”list.
The act makes it a class “C” misdemeanor for any person, firm or corporation claiming to be a representative of a veterans’ charitable organization, with intent to defraud, to solicit contributions for the organization that benefits or profits any person, firm, or corporation other than the organization.
The Act defines a “veterans” charitable organization” as a person, firm, or corporation, scientific, patriotic, social welfare, or advocacy purpose for or on behalf of veterans.
A “qualified veterans’ charitable organization” is one that has been a non-stock corporation forthree or more years or a Federal Tax exempt organization for three or more consecutive years.
A “Veteran” means anyone honorably discharged or released under honorable conditions for active service in the U.S. Armed Forces.
A list of “qualified” veterans’ charitable organizations will be published on the
Department of Veterans’ Affairs homepage beginning July 1, 2013. The listing will be valid for three years. As a “qualified charitable organization”, you are not required to have your organization placed on the “Veterans charitable organization” list. It is strictly voluntary.
In order to be listed on the Department of Veterans’ Affairs “charitable organizations” list, the following information must be provided with appropriate documentation attached and sent to:
Department of Veterans’ Affairs
287 West Street
Rocky Hill, CT 06067
To encourage Veterans to file Fully Developed Claims (FDCs), Veterans who file their very first (original) disability compensation claim as an FDC from Aug. 6, 2013 through Aug. 5, 2015 may be authorized up to a year of retroactive benefits if eligibility for compensation is established. The retroactive benefits are a result of a comprehensive legislative package passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama. Filing an FDC is typically the fastest way for Veterans to receive a decision on their claims.
• Because Veterans filing FDCs receive legally mandated notice through the application process and certify that they have submitted all the evidence they have, VA is able to skip a number of steps in the claims process and go straight to ordering any necessary medical examinations and federal records. This allows VA to issue a decision in half the time of a traditional claim, without sacrificing quality.
• Veterans must file FDCs online through eBenefits or on a paper VA Form 21-526 EZ (March 2013).
• FDCs will help eliminate VA’s disability claims backlog by increasing production while decreasing processing time. Because they can be completed quickly by eliminating much of the development phase of claims processing, VA assigns FDCs a higher priority than many other claims.
• VA is completing its oldest claims first, and through use of mandatory overtime and implementation of other people, process, and technology improvements, VA is on track to meet our overall goal of eliminating the claims backlog in 2015 by deciding all claims within 125 days with 98-percent accuracy.