As we celebrate Veteran’s Day in the U.S. this November 11th, I’d like to honor our uniformed men and women, both those who have served and those who continue to do so. I am very proud of my own military service and most veterans will tell you the same. If you are like many of us, and have friends or family members who have served, here are a five great apps/services to check out.
For Re-entry into Civilian Life
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Hiring Our Heroes app, in partnership with Verizon, is a mobile one-stop shop developed to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses searching for employment. The app gathers all of the program’s resources in one tool – enabling military members and their families to search for jobs and access free employment resources on virtually all mobile devices.
Militarylounge.com has an app called College Guide that provides a comprehensive list of universities that accept the G.I. Bill, a calculator of benefits, as well as a handbook of benefits that are available to vets and soldiers. A major benefit to the military is the G.I. Bill, which, in its post-9/11 form, provides full tuition and fees for public, in-state schools, plus a monthly allowance for housing and an annual stipend for textbooks. Over 6,000 institutions participate in the Post 9/11 GI Bill Yellow Ribbon Program.
Many veterans understandably have trouble navigating the complicated world of the Veterans Administration. Claims Coach, developed by The American Legion, is designed to help the process. It provides step-by-step guidance to help service officers through the process of filing for VA benefits. The free app features a nationwide directory of accredited American Legion service officers, a built-in organizer for appointments, documents and deadlines, and a wealth of other resources. Additionally, a personal secure file called “My Checklist” keeps everything in order, from the initial meeting with a service officer through VA’s decision and appeal, if necessary.
Unfortunately, but understandably, many of our troops come back from service traumatized from events. PTSD Coach was designed for veterans and military service members who have or may have Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This app was created by the VA’s National Center for PTSD in partnership with the Department of Defense’s National Center for Telehealth and Technology. It provides users with education about PTSD, opportunities to find support and tools to help manage the stresses of everyday life with PTSD. You can download it here. It’s been downloaded more than 100,000 times in 74 countries. Features include:
- Information on PTSD and treatments that work
- Tools for screening and tracking symptoms
- Direct links to support and help
- And, as a mobile app, it’s always just a click or phone call away.
As the VA points out: Any data created by the user of this app are only as secure as the phone/device itself. Use the security features on your device if you are concerned about the privacy of your information.
Scout Military Discounts LLC has just launched SCOUT, a military savings mobile application for both iOS and Android devices. The new, free mobile app is designed to provide all U.S. veterans, military members and their families a way to easily access military discounts and freebies from anywhere, at any time from their mobile phone or other mobile devices.
The SCOUT app is available for download at Apple or Google Play. Use the search term SCOUT Military to find the app for download. And if you want to volunteer or get involved, go to scoutmilitarydiscounts.com. The SCOUT app is available for download at the Apple App Store and Google Play. This looks like a great app to use during the holiday season!
For Those Still Serving
So much support for our troops come from veterans friends and families. You can’t beat Skype for keeping in touch with troops at home or abroad. Rules and regulations are different depending upon where a soldier is stationed, but veterans can communicate face to face with their overseas colleagues for practically nothing, and perhaps more importantly, spouses can keep in touch with loved ones that might be far away.
This Veteran’s Day, I want to wish all those who have served, and those who still do serve, the gifts of safety, health, and happiness. Thank you for your service.
November 11, 2014