By Christine Hockin-Boyd, Community Lifeline Center
In 2011, Community Lifeline Center received funding from the Texas Veterans Commission [TVC] to serve the needs of veterans in Collin County. Community Lifeline Center is going beyond that initial award to build a new outreach effort, the Collin County Veterans Coalition.
The goal of the coalition is to bring together disparate veteran service agencies under the Community Lifeline Center banner so that veterans can access a one-stop resource for all of their different needs. Veterans – many of whom need immediate assistance – can spend hours and days trying to navigate the many human services organizations that provide a piece of the total solution.
Every organization plays a vital role in serving veterans: Community Lifeline Center hopes to guide veterans to the organization best suited to a specific need. The need becomes more urgent when we look at the size and scope of the US veteran population.
As of 2011:
–There are 21.5 million veterans in the US, 1.6 million in Texas
–43% of all veterans are over 65 and facing the special needs that aging brings
–There are 1.6 million female veterans who are often the primary caregiver for either children or parents – or both – who have their own needs
–1.8 million veterans – nearly 10% – are under the age of 35 and entering or re-entering the job market
The Community Lifeline Center Veterans Coalition is designed to help guide our Collin County veterans to the best available resource. Their needs are the same as everyone else’s: dental, medical, housing, utilities, job search, family safety and security: but the skills they’ve honed in the military don’t always translate into the private sector. Worse, even when they are faced with serious problems, they are the last group to ask for help, because one of the military skills they learned best is the one that serves them least: self reliance.