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NW MIRECC NewsFlash | Financial Readiness

NewsFlash | Financial Readiness

Man in wheelchair American Red Cross Emergency Services - The American Red Cross Hero Care Center is available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can initiate a request for Red Cross emergency assistance for members of the military currently serving on active duty by using the online self-service tool. Using a computer, smart phone or tablet, you can start a request for services and track its progress from anywhere in the world. Service members eligible to receive emergency communications regarding an immediate family member include:

 Active-duty Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard, Air Force or Space Force
 Activated U.S. Armed Forces members of the Guard and Reserve of all branches   
 Civilians and contractors employed by DoD and stationed OCONUS
 Service Academy Cadet or Midshipman and ROTC Cadet on orders for training
 A Merchant Marine aboard a U.S. Naval Ship

The American Red Cross does not authorize emergency leave for members of the United States military. The Red Cross role is to independently verify the emergency, enabling the service member’s commander to make an educated decision regarding emergency leave and then to provide transportation assistance and/or financial assistance if needed. The American Red Cross facilitates emergency financial assistance on behalf of Military Aid Societies. These Aid Societies determine the financial assistance package that will be offered – a grant or a loan. The Red Cross is the mechanism to expedite access to these financial resources 24/7.

Army Emergency Relief - Army Emergency Relief was founded in 1942 by Secretary of War Henry Stimson and Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Marshall. Charged with relieving undue financial stress on the force, AER serves the enduring priorities of the Secretary and Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army. Since 1942, AER has provided $2 billion to nearly 4 million Soldiers, including $1 billion since 9/11. Through zero-interest loans, grants, and educational scholarships, AER ensures no Soldier faces financial hardship on their own. Company commanders or first sergeants can approve immediate financial assistance. Through zero-interest loans, grants, and educational scholarships, AER ensures no Soldier faces financial hardship on their own. 

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society - The Navy Marine Corps Relief Sociey provides financial assistance and education, as well as other programs and services, to members of the United States Navy and Marine Corps, their eligible family members, widows, and survivors. The main goal is to help each person who requests support for their immediate needs. The long-term mission is to help Sailors and Marines become financially self-sufficient by learning how to better manage their personal finances and prepare for unplanned expenses. Several confidential programs are available, including the zero-interest Quick Assist Loan.

Coast Guard Mutual Assistance - Supporting and offering aid to the entire Coast Guard family; active duty and retired military personnel, civilian employees, commissioned officers of the Public Health Service serving with the Coast Guard, Reservists, Auxiliarists, and their families. During its 95 Years of Service, Coast Guard Mutual Assistance has provided over $200,000,000 financial assistance to the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard. Active duty personnel and Coast Guard Civilian employees should check their unit’s collateral duty list or directory. If you are more than 50 miles from a Coast Guard Mutual Assistance Representative, other Military Relief Societies or the American Red Cross can process your request for assistance on behalf of Coast Guard Mutual Assistance.

Air Force Aid Society - Incorporated in1942, Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) is an official charity for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force. The Air Force Aid Society works to support and enhance the U.S. Air Force and States Space missions by providing emergency financial assistance, educational support, and community programs to Airmen, Guardians, and their families. When unexpected emergencies arise, there is a financial need and help is needed, Air Force Aid Society provides no-interest loans and grants to help Airmen, Guardians, and their families meet immediate needs and make a positive step towards a lasting financial solution.

Alaska Dept of Veterans Affairs - Serving as the primary advocate for Alaska's Veterans and striving to help veterans and their families improve their lives. From helping veterans to file claims for education, medical or other benefits to assisting them in obtaining earned military awards, the Office of Veterans Affairs is here to serve you.

Idaho Division of Veterans Services - Relief grants are provided to Idaho Veterans for the purchase of food, fuel, shelter, and other necessities of daily living in a time of temporary emergency need. No grants will be made to residents of domiciliaries or long-term care facilities or to a potential recipient who refuses to take advantage of available government benefits or federal-state- local relief. Applicants will be required to obtain certification that they have applied for available assistance programs. Emergency relief funds may not be used to duplicate assistance from other sources.

Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs - The Oregon Veterans Emergency Financial Assistance Program (OVEFAP) is for Oregon Veterans and their immediate family (spouse, unremarried surviving spouse, child, or stepchild) who are in need of emergency financial assistance. Assistance is granted one time only and average award amounts vary. Emergency financial assistance includes, but is not limited to, emergency or temporary housing and related housing expenses, such as expenses for utilities, insurance, house repairs; mortgage or rent assistance; emergency medical or dental expenses; and emergency transportation expenses.

Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs - The Veterans Innovations Program (VIP), was created to provide assistance to Washington veterans facing financial hardships who served on or after September 11, 2001. The purpose of the Washington VIP is to provide crisis and emergency relief and education, training, and employment assistance to US Armed Forces Reservists, Washington National Guard, Military Veterans and their families in their communities.

  • Veterans Assistance Fund - Clark County Washington - The Veterans Assistance Fund provides  the following emergency relief to qualified veterans (persons who have served in the military): Rent, Heating and utilities, Food assistance, Transportation, Prescription coverage, Burial assistance, Clothing and tools, Emergency dental care, and Referral services. The Veterans Advisory Board oversees the Clark County Veteran's Assistance Fund, which provides emergency relief to qualified veterans. The board consists of representatives from nationally recognized veterans organizations in Clark County and veterans from the community. For assistance with the Veterans Assistance Fund please call 564-397-8478, or email

Veterans Home Loans Financial AssistanceVA Home Loans - Created by the original G.I. Bill (Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944), the VA-Guaranteed Home Loan program has helped generations of Veterans, Servicemembers, and their families enjoy the dream of homeownership and the opportunity to retain their homes in times of temporary financial hardship. The VA home loan guaranty is an agreement that VA will reimburse a lender (such as banks, credit unions, mortgage companies, etc.) in the event of loss due to foreclosure. Learn how VA direct and VA-backed home loans work—and find out which loan program may be right for you. In addition to the VA Home Loan, several states in the U.S. provide home loans for military veterans and servicemembers. Two of the states providing veteran home loans, Alaska and Oregon, are in the VISN 20 region of VA.

Helping a Hero - Helping a Hero provides specially adapted homes for qualifying service members through partnerships made with the builders, developers, communities, and the veteran. Helping a Hero strives to engage the community in providing services and resources for our wounded heroes and their families. Additionally, Helping a Hero provides support programs including marriage retreats, caregiver retreats, recreational activities, family get togethers, and financial support for emergency needs.

Man in wheelchairDisability Housing Grants for Veterans - VA provides housing grants for Veterans and service members so they can buy or change a home to meet their needs and live more independently. Changing a home might involve installing ramps or widening doorways to provide access for Veterans with certain service-connected disabilities. The Specially Adapted Housing program helps Veterans with certain permanent and total service­-connected disabilities purchase or construct an adapted home, or modify an existing home to accommodate a disability. Find out if you’re eligible for a disability housing grant—and how to apply.

Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Unmet Needs Financial Grant - The VFW Unmet Needs Financial Grant helps America's military families who have run into unexpected financial difficulties as a result of deployment or other military-related activity or injury. The program provides financial aid grants of up to $1,500 to assist with basic life needs in the form of a grant - not a loan - so no repayment is required. To further ease the burden, VFW pays the creditor directly. Eligible expenses for the VFW Unmet Needs Financial Grant include:

 Household expenses – mortgage, rent, repairs, insurance
 Vehicle expenses – payments, insurance, repairs
 Children’s clothing, diapers, formula, school or childcare expenses
 Medical bills, prescriptions & eyeglasses

The needs of our veterans, service members and their families should never go unmet. VFW understands the challenges veterans, service members and military families can face and believe that experiencing financial difficulties should not be one of them.

FDIC Money Smart - First released in 2001 and regularly updated since then, Money Smart has a long track record of success in reducing stress and improving financial readiness of Veterans. NW MIRECC started with the FDIC Money Smart program through the Helping Veterans #GetBanked and Manage Their Money training program. As a member of the Money Smart Alliance, NW MIRECC helps promote financial capability to strengthen the financial education efforts of Veterans, Servicemembers, and their families.

Making₵ents Personal Finance Knowledge Center - Finance education providing step-by-step information for navigating auto loans, saving for retirement, paying for college, buying a home and much more. Want to know the best ways to solidify your financial foundation? Set a budget for yourself, build credit, control debt and make saving a priority.

Prudential Pathways Seminars for US Department of Veterans Affairs - Free financial education seminars sponsored by VA in partnership with Prudential Financial Services. Participants also have access to the Financial Wellness Center, a digital portal focused on learning, with more than 100 short educational articles and interactive tools that include financial self-assessment, budgeting and student loan assistance and counseling. For more information, please contact, or call 1-844-592-8993.

Make the Connection - Even the most responsible person can run into financial or legal problems. If you are dealing with money issues, your first impulse may be to borrow more money — but be aware that the additional debt and terms of some loans can quickly put extra strain on your finances and may lead to even more serious financial trouble. It’s important to be aware of the resources available to you in order to overcome your financial or legal problems. - The only source for your free credit reports. Authorized by Federal law. Monitoring your credit reports regularly is an important part of being in control of your finances. Federal law requires each of the three nationwide consumer credit reporting companies - EquifaxExperian and TransUnion - to give you a free credit report every 12 months if you ask for it. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, you may request a free weekly online credit report. Learn more about your credit report ways to improve your credit score on  

Financial Wellness: Sound Principles For Successful Money Management - Free eBook published in collaboration with nonprofit Guideposts for military service members, veterans, and families. Advice from trusted mentors who work to help those with financial difficulties. These principles help obtain a more secure financial future through more careful spending and improved saving and investing habits.

Military Saves - A campaign coordinated by the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America (CFA) and is dedicated to helping servicemembers and their families save money, reduce debt, and build wealth. Removing financial debt stress and improving your personal financial readiness starts with a budget and savings.

The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) and Lifeline program - Opportunities and security of phone service includes being able to connect to jobs, family, and emergency services. Consumers may be eligible for the Lifeline program if they participate in a qualifying program including, but not limited to, the VA Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit. The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a U.S. government program that helps many low income households pay for broadband service and internet connected devices. 

Use of these Materials and Finding VA Health Care

Please note that the information provided in these materials is for educational purposes only. It does not replace the role of a financial advisor for advice on savings and investments. Investing in your future means saving for retirement, college or a rainy day fund. If you're working with an investment professional, or someone is trying to sell you an investment, check them out before handing over your hard-earned money. As a Veteran, you have access to information about legal services and financial guidance from reliable sources including, but not limited to; VA, Vet Centers, and accredited Veterans Service Organizations. If you are looking for professional medical care, find your local VA healthcare center by using the VA Facilities Locator & Directory. This page may contain links that will take you outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs website. VA does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of the linked websites.

The mission of VA VISN 20 MIRECC is to improve the quality of life and function of Veterans by developing, evaluating and promoting the implementation of effective treatments for military PTSD and its complex comorbidities. These PTSD comorbidities include the behavioral consequences of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), substance use disorders, chronic pain, and dementia. The VA VISN 20 Northwest Health Network consists of four states across three time zones; Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska. The primary research center located in VA Puget Sound Health Care System is affiliated with the University of Washington. VA Puget Sound serves Veterans from a five-state area in the Pacific Northwest with two main divisions: American Lake and Seattle. In Washington, there are VA clinics also located in Bellevue, Bremerton, Edmunds, Everett, Federal Way, Mount Vernon, Olympia, Port Angeles, Puyallup, Renton, Silverdale, and Seattle. The research center located at VA Portland Heath Care System is affiliated with the Oregon Health and Science University. VA Portland serves Veterans from Oregon and Southwest Washington with two main divisions: Portland and Vancouver. In Oregon, there are VA clinics also located in Bend, Fairview, Hillsboro, Newport, Lincoln City, Portland, Salem, The Dalles, Warrenton, and West Linn.

Virgin Islands American Samoa Vermont Rhode Island Rhode Island Connecticut Connecticut New Jersey New Jersey Delaware Delaware Massachusetts Massachusetts Alaska Hawaii Philippines Guam Puerto Rico Maine New Hampshire Vermont New York Michigan Pennsylvania West Virginia Ohio Indiana Kentucky Virginia Maryland Maryland Washington DC North Carolina South Carolina Georgia Florida Wisconsin Illinois Tennessee Alabama Mississippi Louisiana Arkansas Missouri Minnesota Washington Idaho Oregon California Nevada Arizona Texas Oklahoma Iowa Nebraska Kansas Utah New Mexico Colorado South Dakota North Dakota Wyoming Montana

VA Vet Center Logo Vet Centers in the VISN 20 Health Care Network are community-based counseling centers that provide a wide range of social and psychological services, including professional readjustment counseling to eligible Veterans, active-duty Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, and Space Force service members, including National Guard and Reserve components, and their families. 1-877-927-8387 is a free, around the clock confidential call center where Veterans, service members and their families can talk about their military experience or any other issue they are facing in transitioning after military service or trauma and get connected to their nearest Vet Center.

Veterans Crisis Hotline 1-800-273-8255 - If you are having a medical or mental health emergency, dial 911. If you are having thoughts of suicide, dial 988, then press 1 at the prompt to reach the Veterans Crisis Line

Veterans Crisis "988" - The Military Crisis Line is a free, confidential resource for all service members, including members of the National Guard and Reserve, and Veterans, even if they’re not enrolled in VA benefits or health care. Call 988 then Press 1 If you are a Veteran, service member, or any person concerned about one who is hard of hearing, you can connect with professional, caring VA responders through online chat and text message (838255). 

In Europe
Call 00800 1273 8255 or DSN 118

In Korea
Call 080-855-5118 or DSN 118

In Afghanistan
Call 00 1 800 273 8255 or DSN 111

In the Philippines
Call #MYVA or 02-8550-3888 and press 7

A Veteran overseas may contact the Veterans Crisis Line via the chat modality at If the Veteran prefers a phone call, they can request this within the chat venue. For TTY users: Use your preferred relay service or dial 711 then 1-800-273-8255. Are you looking for clinical care or counseling? Assistance with benefits? No matter what you’re experiencing, we’re here to connect you with resources and support systems to help. The Veterans Crisis Line is free and confidential. When you call, chat, or text, a qualified responder will listen and help. You decide how much information to share. Support doesn't end with your conversation. Our responders can connect you with the resources you need.


VA has a variety of mental health resources, information, treatment options, and more — all accessible to Veterans, Veterans’ supporters, and the general public. Explore the pages below to learn more about a specific mental health topic. Each of these pages includes resources, information on treatment options, and more.

Stories of Support

Telehealth Therapy

For Daniel, Don, and Jennifer, convenient video counseling made it easier to put their health first. Adjusting from military service to civilian life can be both exciting and challenging. Make the Connection

Dial 988 then press 1

Connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach caring, qualified responders with the Department of Veterans Affairs. The Veterans Crisis Line is free and confidential. Support doesn't end with your conversation. Our responders can connect you with the resources you need.

Mental Health Updates

Explore the latest mental health news, resources, and real-life stories of mental health recovery.

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