Benefit Category: Federal
If you are in crisis, please call 911, go to your nearest Emergency Room, or call the Veterans Crisis Line available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255 (Spanish/Español 1-888-628-9454). Veterans press “1” after you call. You can also chat live online with a crisis counselor 24/7 by visiting the Veterans Crisis Line website.
is a public awareness campaign by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that provides personal testimonials and resources to help Veterans discover ways to improve their lives. Many of our Nation’s Veterans—from those who served in World War II to those involved in current conflicts—return not only with physical wounds but also mental health issues they may not recognize.
The Make the Connection campaign encourages Veterans and their families to “make the connection"— with information and resources, with the strength and resilience of Veterans like themselves, with other people, and with available sources of support including mental health treatments.
Central to this campaign is MakeTheConnection.net, a one-stop resource where Veterans and their families and friends can privately explore information about physical and mental health symptoms, challenging life events, and mental health conditions. On this site, Veterans and their families and friends can learn about available resources and support.
Powerful personal stories and testimonials are at the heart of Make the Connection, illustrating how Veterans face and overcome mental health issues and challenges. These stories and testimonials come from Veterans of all service eras, genders, and backgrounds and each of them provides a resounding and compelling example of the positive outcomes for treatment, recovery, and the many paths to more fulfilling lives.
Through Veterans’ own voices, Veterans have the chance to hear from trusted and credible sources—other Veterans like themselves. MakeTheConnection.net helps Veterans recognize that there are people out there like them who are going through similar experiences, overcoming challenges, reaching positive outcomes for treatment and recovery, and finding paths to fulfilling lives.
Are you struggling to adjust to civilian life? Feeling overwhelmed or stressed about recent obstacles in your life? Moving Forward is a free, on-line educational and life coaching program that teaches Problem Solving skills to help you to better handle life’s challenges. It is designed to be especially helpful for Veterans, Military Service Members and their families. However, Moving Forward teaches skills that can be useful to anyone with stressful problems. Are you ready to Move Forward?
Click on these topics for further information:
Raising Awareness about PTSD: A Resource Guide
Other available resources:
DCoE Outreach Center*: The Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) runs a resource center that provides information and resources about psychological health (PH), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and traumatic brain injury (TBI). The center can be contacted 24/7 by phone at 866-966-1020, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can also go to DCoE Outreach Center Live Chat.
Military OneSource: Military OneSource is a free service provided by the Department of Defense to Service Members and their families to help with a broad range of concerns. It offers two types of short-term, non-medical counseling services to all active-duty, Reserve, and National Guard members and their families: face-to-face counseling and telephonic consultations. You can access counseling services by contacting a Military OneSource consultant to determine which type would be best for you and your situation. Call and talk anytime, 24/7 at 1-800-342-9647.
National Resource Directory (NRD)*: The NRD is a website for connecting wounded warriors, Service Members, Veterans, and their families with those who support them. It provides access to services and resources at the national, state and local levels to support recovery, rehabilitation and community reintegration. Visitors can find information on a variety of topics including benefits & compensation, education & training, employment, family & caregiver support, health, homeless assistance, housing, transportation & travel, and other services & resources. The NRD is a partnership among the Departments of Defense, Labor and Veterans Affairs.
Coaching Into Care: Is a national telephone-based support service for family members and others who want to help reluctant Veterans access their VA health care benefits, particularly for mental health issues. Coaching Into Care is another “door” to VA care. They provide support and problem solving assistance for family members and others concerned about a Veteran, coaching with family members about how to talk to Veterans about seeking VA care, referrals for care for Veterans and family members, and information about available programs or enrolling in VA Care.
Troop and Family: Professional counselors are available 24 hours, year-round. Representatives will assist in establishing 6 free sessions with a counselor of your choice in your community. Call 1-888-755-9355 to obtain services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
RCS Combat Call Center: 877-927-8387 (877-WAR VETS) An around the clock confidential call center where combat Veterans and their families can call to talk about their military experience or any other issue they are facing in their readjustment to civilian life. The staff is comprised of combat Veterans from several eras as well as families members of combat Veterans.
NV Human Services: Provides leadership for the planning, development, and oversight of a system of care for children, adults, and families with severe emotional disorders, mental illness, and/or substance abuse issues. Visit the Division of Health & Human Services website for more information.
Taking care of your mental health is as important as taking care of your physical health. Mental health problems, when untreated, can lead to physical health problems.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):
An agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA’s mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities.
Congress established the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in 1992 to make substance use and mental disorder information, services, and research more accessible. SAMHSA is a public agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Prevention, treatment, and recovery support services for behavioral health are important parts of the health service systems for the community. The services work to improve our health and minimize costs to individuals, families, businesses, and governments. However, people suffering from either substance use and mental disorders, or both, because of their illness are often excluded from the current health care system and instead have to rely on “public safety net" programs. Last year alone, close to 20 million people in need of substance abuse treatment did not receive it. Further, an estimated 11.8 million people reported an unmet need for mental health care. The gap in service to this population unnecessarily jeopardizes the health and wellness of people and causes a ripple effect in costs to American communities.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Diagnosable Illnesses Secondary to TBI