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Have you met your VA Benefits Advisors?

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- As 201 begins, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reflects on the impact that VA benefits advisors made in the lives of transitioning service members, veterans and their family members over the past year.

As part of the Transition Assistance Program, more than 300 VA benefits advisors are stationed at more than 280 military installations around the world. They conduct mandatory VA Benefits I and II briefings and the Career Technical Training Track, a two-day workshop that helps service members identify civilian occupations, establish career goals, and begin applying for credentials and technical training.

In addition, benefits advisors are available to meet with you one-on-one to answer questions about VA benefits, eligibility requirements, and application processes.

Almost all VA benefits advisors are veterans or military spouses themselves. They understand the unique needs of service members and veterans and can relate to many of the challenges faced when returning to civilian life. Through November 2015, VA benefits advisors helped more than 178,000 transitioning service members, veterans and family members.

"My advisor's knowledge was undeniably thorough and he kept the class entertained and engaged," said one service member. "He was really down to earth and I can't wait to schedule my appointment with him to discuss some of the topics in more depth so I can figure out which benefits are best for me."

During one-on-one sessions this year, benefits advisors helped service members research how to maximize their VA benefits and register on eBenefits - VA's online application portal.

They showed compassion to veterans who experienced a death in the family and needed to quickly submit the correct paperwork during a difficult time. They worked with homeless veterans to find housing resources and helped transitioning service members use the Veterans Employment Center™ to begin the search for a civilian career.

Service members can talk to an advisor in person or on the phone to discuss specific questions and concerns. Call 719-556-4682 or 719-556-7638 to talk to a benefits advisor at Peterson Air Force Base or visit the office at Building 350, Suite 1042 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

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