There are many services available locally to help Veterans transition home. These are a few. 5. EMPLOYMENT. A good place to start is CareerSource Citrus-Levy-Marion County. There are two Veteran representatives that work exclusively with disabilities that may impair a Veteran's ability to work (which includes PTSD). Whether you fit in this special category or not, they have a whole "road map" of services to help you get started, including interest and skill assessments, resume writing, interviewing, computer skills, etc. Visit CareerSource at 2704 N.E. 14th Street, Ocala, 34470 between the hours 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday. or call 352-732-1706. 6. STEPS TO GET MORE EDUCATION/TRAINING. There are three schools in Ocala that are military friendly, (i.e. take the GI Bill and have other financial resources for Veterans). They offer programs that are specifically targeted to Veterans who want to enhance/gain new skills. College of Central Florida is offering short term training in high-high-wage careers. If you are considering enrolling for either short term training or for a college degree, contact Todd Reiland at 352-873-5855, ext. 1633 or email [email protected]
You may also contact VA Specialist LaShaunia Brooks at 352-854-2322. ext. 1595 and she can certify your VA benefits. Community Technical & Adult Education (CTAE) offers courses that are eligible for Veterans educational assistance. Visit their website at www.CTAE.edu or call 352-671-7203 and speak directly to a Veteran certifying official. Have your DD214 and certificate of eligibility if available. Saint Leo University is located in the University Center on the College of Central Florida Ocala campus. Saint Leo University offers bachelor degree programs in Psychology, Education, Human Services, Criminal Justice and others. Call 352-671-3391 to speak with an advisor or VA Certifying Official. 7. ADDITIONAL HELP. If you are a Veteran without income and need assistance with shelter and other basic necessities, call the Salvation Army at 352-732-8326, ext. 319 and ask for the Vet Specialist or ask for the case manager at Volunteers of America, at 352-562-7872. Family Endeavors helps Vets with dependents who are being evicted or homeless. Apply with them the first of the month. 8. ACCESS FLORIDA. Is a great resource that can help you with food stamps, Medicaid and temporary cash assistance. Apply on-line at www.myflorida.com/accessflorida or go to 1525 E. Silver Springs Blvd. #207, on the East side of the Cascades, follow the green signs. 9. SPIRITUAL ASSISTANCE. A good place to start is Pointman Ministry that meets every Monday night 7-8:30 p.m. at the Ritz Veterans' Village. It is a non-denominational, faith-based group of "Pizza and Prayer" that provides positive principals for life. Go to the back of the Ritz, 111 NE 12th Ave., Ocala and head up the stairs. All Veterans are welcome. Call Veterans Larry at 352-685-1138 or Carl at 352-229-0498 for a special invite. 10. COMMUNITY LEGAL SERVICES. Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida provides free civil legal aid to low-income Veterans and their families. Call the Helpline at 352-629-6257 or apply online at www.clsmf.org. 11. SUBSTANCE ABUSE. If you suspect a fellow Veteran might have a substance abuse problem, call Alcoholics Anonymous at 352-867-0660 or Narcotics Anonymous at 352-368-6061. 12. MARION COUNTY HOMELESS COALITION. Lists a wealth of services at www.mchc.org. All libraries have computers and internet that are free to use.
Welcome Home Directory for Returning Veterans For immediate medical help call 911.
Psychiatric Crisis Lines are available to help you. Marion County: 352-629-95953 Alachua County: 352-264-6789 Citrus County: 352-726-7155 Veterans Center: 877 WAR VETS, 877-927-8387 Veteran Crisis Hot Line: 800-273-8255, press option 1. By text to the VA: 838255
Sponsored by SummerGlen Veterans Club and Veterans Helping Veterans Compiled by Combat Boots to Cowboy Boots Horse in Miracles, Inc. We welcome your feedback. Please call or text Jen Elliott at 352-239-3484.
There are many services available locally to help Veterans transition home. These are a few.
IF YOU ARE A COMBAT VETERAN
1. CHECK IN. Make sure you have a copy of your DD214. If you don't have one, go to the VETERAN SERVICE OFFICE at 2528 E. Silver Springs Blvd, Ocala, by the Marion County Public Library. Call 352-671-8422. Hours are 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. or go online at www.va.gov. Go to the FORMS Section on the bottom and complete SF 180. Allow 4-6 weeks to get a new DD214. Please note: many benefits are time limited, depending upon how long you have been out of the military; this is your first step. If you are looking for help for a family member(s), make sure you have their Social Security card and know their date of birth. The VETERAN SERVICE OFFICE can also help you see if you qualify for financial benefits, such as service connected disability and non-service connected pension. They are a good referral source for other services as well.
COMBAT VETERANS. Combat Veterans qualify for readjustment programs. The Ocala Veterans Center provides many services including counseling for PTSD and referrals. You can be seen almost immediately, call 352-237-1947. They are located behind the Paddock Mall at 3300 S.W. 34th Ave, #140, Ocala, 34471. Hours 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, extended hours after April 15. All combat Veterans or those suffering from a sexual assault while in the military qualify. If you are not a Combat Veteran, go to a regular VA Clinic for assistance. Outside the VA, The Centers provides mental health services including crisis care, individual and group therapy and medication management as well as substance abuse treatment. Call 352-291-5555 or visit www.thecenters.us.
2. GET INFORMED. Go to www.ebenefits.va.gov to see all your personal military records and find other Veteran organizations. This site is very helpful and user friendly. 3. GET COVERED. Enroll in the Veteran Health System whether or not you think you will need medical services; you may need these services later. You can register at any VA Clinic. Ocala-The Cascades VA Clinic located at 1515 E. Silver Springs Blvd., on the West side of the building. Call 352-369-3320. Hours are 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. Having trouble? Call Enrollment Coordinator, Cynthia Ramos at 352-369-1328. The Villages VA Clinic at 8900 S.E. 165th Street Mulberry Lane. Call 877-649-0224 or 352-674-5000. Hours are 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. Malcom Randall VA Medical Center at 1601 S.W. Archer Road, Gainesville or the Urgent Care Center, Gainesville. Call 352-376-1611 or 800-324-8387. Hours 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. If you need emergency medical or psychiatric help call crisis hotline 800-273-8255 or go directly to the VA Medical Center. Visit www.northflorida.va.gov, click on Location & Directions then Community Clinics to find locations, maps and directions to all VA Clinics in North Florida/ South Georgia.
COMBAT BOOTS TO COWBOY BOOTS. If you are having trouble adjusting to civilian life, or are experiencing symptoms of PTSD, call this active, outdoor program working with rescue horses. Join other returning Veterans in relaxing, focusing and moving forward in short and long term free programs that include grooming, playing and training horses. All Veterans are welcome. Let Jen and her horses Welcome You Home! Call 352-239-3484 or visit www.horseinmiracles.org.
4. FREE PHONES. Are available to all Veterans (one per household) through SafeLink. A SafeLink representative is available at the Ocala VA clinic MondayThursday between the hours 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Look for the person in a yellow/white shirt hanging out in the hallway.
VETERANS HELPING VETERANS. Is staffed by Veterans and provide many support services and referrals. They have a weekly food bank and can sometimes provide emergency assistance. They are located at 1527 N.E. 8th Ave., Ocala 34470. Call them at 352-433-2320 or visit them between the hours 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Monday-Thursday.