VA Programs: Employment Resource
When it comes to addressing and preventing homelessness among veterans, employment is one of the most impactful and effective factors. Veterans with a steady job are more likely to be financially stable, safely housed, and have access to amenities such as health insurance.
However, for a variety of reasons, many veterans find it difficult to find adequate or appropriate employment after leaving the military. To that end, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers robust employment assistance for veterans. Here, we’ll give a brief overview of what the VA’s employment programs for veterans look like, as well as how qualifying veterans can access them:
What Employment Services Does the VA Offer?
The VA offers comprehensive educational and career support services to qualifying veterans, including:
- Vocational Rehabilitation. The Veteran Readiness and Employment Program (VR&E) helps veterans with service-connected disabilities find and/or maintain suitable employment. The program consists of five tracks designed the meet the needs of veterans in different situations:
- Reemployment track
- Rapid Access to Employment track
- Self-Employment track
- Employment Through Long-Term Services track
- Independent Living track
- Educational and Career Counseling. The Personalized Career Planning and Guidance (PCPG) program helps both recent veterans and service members who are leaving active service soon. PCPG helps participants determine the best career for them and find a training or educational program that fits their needs. PCPG also includes academic and adjustment counseling as well as resume support and goal planning.
- Job Placement. Veterans have access to a variety of job listing sites and resources through the VA and other government entities, such as:
- The Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS)
- VA for Vets
- VA Careers
- Feds Hire Vets
In addition, the VA maintains a database of other non-government resources that may be useful to veterans exploring career options.
- Transition Assistance. The Transition Assistance Program (TAP) is a one-day, in-person course designed to help veterans adjust to civilian life and navigate VA benefits, including education and employment.
- Support for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses. The Vets First Verification Program offers select advantages, resources, and support to veteran entrepreneurs who own small businesses.
Note that eligibility requirements vary for each of the programs listed above. To confirm your eligibility, check the program website or call the VA Benefits hotline at (800) 827-1000
How To Get Started
If you’re a new or soon-to-be veteran or are returning to the job market after an extended time away, knowing where to start and how to access Veterans Affairs jobs services can be difficult.
If you know which program is the best fit for you and have confirmed your eligibility status, check the VA website to see if an online application is available. For example, VR&E and PCPG both have online applications. Alternatively, you can apply by mail by sending in your completed application.
If you aren’t sure which program is best for you or whether you are eligible, call the VA benefits hotline or go to your local VA benefits location.
If you are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, contact the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans at (877) 424-3838 or find the nearest VA medical center.
National Veterans Homeless Support seeks to eliminate homelessness among veterans in Central Florida and nationwide. NVHS takes a proactive, intervention-based approach to homelessness by meeting homeless veterans where they are and helping them from there. Through programs like Search and Rescue Outreach, NVHS helps homeless veterans get the supplies they need to survive, connects them with support and resources, and helps them transition off the streets and into temporary or permanent housing. If you’re able, consider supporting our mission by donating or signing on as a volunteer.