Monday, July 30, 2012

Unique Resources for Veterans, Next Military Career Expo; Military & Military Families; Military Spouses License Portability Gets Easier; Law Enforcement & Firefighter Deaths To Date

"Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities for it is the quality that guarantees all others." Winston Churchill

Unique Resources

Dedicated to Heroes often reports on resources available for military personnel, veterans,  and military families. Today I want to focus on some unique resources.

  • The Fisher House Foundation. This program, a public-private initiative, provides a services beyond what is normally provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The Fisher House Foundation donates "comfort homes," built on the grounds of major military and VA medical centers.  These homes provide all the comforts of home in a supportive environment for families of military personnel hospitalized for unexpected illness, disease or injury. The program currently serves 17,000 families. It's made available over four million days of lodging since 1990. For more information, contact:

(Note: The VA recently announced grants totalling $100 million to help almost 42,000 homeless and at-risk veterans)
  • Veterans First, serving homeless and at-risk veterans in Orange Country, CA, provides services in housing, meals, case management, life skills, mental health counseling, benefit counseling, transportation and job training and employment assistance. For additional information contact:
  • Semper Fi Fund is a nonprofit agency that provides immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of the Armed Forces and their families. The Semper Fi Fund also provides assistance in adaptive housing, transportation, education and career counseling, and PTSD and TMI support. For more information contact:
  • Thanks USA offers scholarship programs to families members of military personnel. For more information contact:
  • TAPS provides 24/7 tragedy assistance for ANYONE who has suffered the loss of a military loved one, regardless of the relationship to the deceased or the circumstances of the death. To date, TAPS has provided assistance to over 35,000 surviving family members. For additional information contact:

  • The Gary Sinise Foundation provides assistance to military families and veterans by creating and supporting unique programs designed to entertain, educate, inspire, strengthen, and build communities. They can be reached at:
  • Operation Gratitude sends 100,000 care packages filled with snacks, entertainment items and personal letter of appreciation to U.S. Service Members annually. To contact Operation Gratitude, go to: http:/
  • Vets Rock provides veterans with various forms of assistance, ranging from help applying for VA benefits to helping veterans find food and shelter. For more information contact:

  • Pets for Patriots support military members in the adoption of adult shelter pets, large dgs and special needs animals. They can be reached by contacting:

Career Expo

The next military career expo takes place at Beale AFB, Yuba City, CA, on Tuesday, July 31, 2012. For additional information, visit: You will also see dates for more career expos throughout the country in coming months.

Military Spouses License Portability Just Got Easier

For too long, spouses of deployed military personnel, who work in professions requiring a state license (nurses, teachers, therapists, etc.), found it difficult to work in their chosen professions when they moved from state to state. The issue of "reciprocity" was an obstacle to many.

That is now changing. Last week, North Carolina became the 26th state  that will make it easier for those professionals to work when moving from one state to another. Their licenses and certifications will now be "portable" and recognized by these states.

For those living in state that have still not initiated this reciprocity, I urge you to contact your local congress person. Convince your congress person to remove this obstacle to your practicing your chosen profession.

Police Officer Line of Duty Deaths: 2012

To date, there have been 61 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. July is on pace to be the second highest month behind January when 17 died. Automobile accidents remain the highest cause of death at 17, followed by deaths due to gunfire at 21.

Firefighter Line of Duty Deaths

To date, according to U.S. Fire Administration, there have been 47 fatalities among firefighters.

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