Struggling mentally and emotionally after military service is one of the most common, yet least talked about issues facing our veterans. You are not alone and there are resources to support you through this.
1-800-273-8255 (press 1) or text 838255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
The Trevor Project Lifeline (LGBTQ): 1-866-488-7386
National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673
Para apoyo de crisis en español, llame al: 1-888-628-9454.
SUBSTANCE ABUSE SUPPORT
SAMHSA National Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
National Call Center for Homeless Veterans (VA): 1-877-4AID-VET
National Coalition for Homeless Veterans: 1-800-VET-HELP
Additional Veteran Resources
The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs is not always the first place a veteran seeks out for support after their service. Many veterans don't know what medical and mental health services are available to them, especially if they separated from the military with a less than Honorable discharge.
If you're not VA healthcare eligible due to a less than Honorable discharge, you may be able to get your discharge status upgraded.
According to the VA, all branches of the military consider you to have a strong case for discharge upgrade if you can show your discharge status was connected to:
Mental health conditions, including PTSD
Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
Sexual assault or harassment during military service (Military Sexual Trauma, MST)
Sexual orientation (including under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy)
Utilize the VA's discharge upgrade survey to get instructions on how to apply for an upgrade or correction.
You may also be eligible to receive VA healthcare benefits through a service-connected disability claim if a medical or mental health issue developed, or worsened, during your service. You can utilize eBenefits to file and manage disability claims online.
Veterans who are VA healthcare eligible can utilize MyHealthyVet to manage prescriptions, appointments, health records, and communications with your VA health care team for medical and mental health support.
The Mission Continues is a national, nonpartisan nonprofit that empowers veterans to continue their service, and empowers communities with veteran talent, skills and preparedness to generate visible impact. They host programs in cities across the country, deploying veteran volunteers alongside nonprofit partners and community leaders to improve educational resources, increase access to parks and green spaces, foster neighborhood identity, and more.
Mission 22 is a non-profit who combats the ever-rising veteran suicide rate with three main programs; veteran treatment programs, memorials and national awareness.
Mission 22 provides treatment programs to veterans for Post-Traumatic Stress, Traumatic Brain Injury and other issues they might be facing. It organizes events and builds memorials to create social impact and awareness for these issues. Mission 22 also has an Ambassador volunteer program for people to get involved as well.
Wounded Warrior Project unites and supports veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury while serving in the military on or after September 11, 2001.
MVP's mission is to match up combat veterans and former professional athletes together -- after the uniform comes off -- to give them a new team to tackle the transition together. MVP shows them they are not alone.
Housing and Employment
Eligible veterans may receive housing support through the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) program.
If you need housing assistance, call the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans at 1-877-4AID-VET.
Veterans in California can utilize the services of PATH, an organization that helps people find permanent housing and provide case management, medical and mental healthcare, benefits advocacy, employment training, and other services to help them maintain their homes stably
Soldiers' Angeles provides support to homeless or low-income veterans and their families. Their services include mobile food distributions, providing hygiene kits, and helping veterans get connected with VA services and benefits.
Volunteers of America supports veterans nationwide with transitional housing, employment resources, Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF), Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program (HVRP), and addressing moral injury.
Veterans in Southern California can utilize the support of Patriots and Paws in receiving basic home furnishings, especially helpful for those utilizing HUD-VASH vouchers. Patriots and Paws can also connect veterans with a rescued companion animal.
Veteran Resources Centers of America (VRC) is a helpful hub of resources spanning from housing to nutrition, mental health to employment and training.
DAV.org can support veterans attempting to make a benefits claim and provide connections to employment support.
Find pro bono legal support in your state by browsing the American Bar Association's veteran directory.