A collaboration between VA and The Daniel and Salvador Montoya Heroes Foundation is helping Veterans during the coronavirus pandemic.
Heroes Foundation is a nonprofit that works with Veteran-friendly companies to match jobs for Veterans, transitioning service members and their spouses. VHA and Heroes Foundation are in the process of creating a formal partnership.
To date, VA and Heroes Foundation have collaborated on Veteran hiring events and resource fairs across the nation. They will continue to expand the partnership and help employers hire Veterans and improve their economic stability and quality of life.
Within the past year, VA has introduced Heroes Foundation to various programs within VA, including VHA’s Compensated Work Therapy, Veteran Community Partnerships, the Veteran Experience Office’s Community Veteran Engagement Boards, and the Veterans Benefits Administration.
Goal: Help Veterans find meaningful employment
These relationships have given Heroes Foundation a better understanding of what VA offers to help employers learn about the unique characteristics of Veterans, transitioning service members and their spouses.
“My goal has always been to help Veterans find meaningful employment,” said Chris Montoya, president and CEO of Heroes Foundation. “But the previous ways we have tried to solve this issue haven’t affected the gap that prevents Veterans and military spouses from progressing in the hiring process.
Our approach at Heroes Foundation is to flip the paradigm and equip companies with the tools, resources and programs necessary to hire, retain and serve Veteran employees.
“These outreach and education programs are transforming and empowering human resource departments within these companies to drive the conversation with their Veteran employees. This type of system builds a culture where Veterans understand their benefits and aren’t afraid to ask for help. It also sets the foundation for a place Veterans desire to work.”
VHA’s Office of Community Engagement (OCE) supports the Heroes Foundation partnership. It also manages partnerships with organizations across the country to improve access to resources for Veterans.
Military training provides Veterans with unique skills and abilities
OCE helps grow partnerships at the national, state and community level. Its mission is to create partnerships that benefit Veterans, their families, caregivers, and survivors.
“By collaborating with organizations such as Heroes Foundation, VA is helping Veterans find employment,” said Dr. Tracy Weistreich, nurse executive for OCE. “Military training provides Veterans with unique skills and abilities. Connecting them with employers who need and appreciate those skills is an important step to ensuring Veterans have economic stability within rewarding careers.
It also enables them to work in environments where their employers are equipped to connect them with VA resources and inform them of their unique benefits.”
More information about Heroes Foundation and how it assists Veterans.
Dr. Jamie D. Davis is a health system specialist for the Office of Community Engagement.