Volume 15, Number 36
By Douggy Johnson (Courtesy of the Wake County Veterans Services)
Even though Veterans Day is months away, the veterans of Wake County have plenty to be excited about. As many as 1,000 veterans are expected to attend the Veterans Experience Action Center (VEAC) in Cary – some from as far away as southern Maryland.
This VEAC is a partnership between the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA), the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Wake County Veterans Services to allow veterans the rare opportunity to engage the VA face-to-face. Veterans can find out the statuses of their pending VA claims or can sit with an experienced veterans’ services officer (VSO) to learn how to start a VA claim. The VEAC will be held at the Herbert Young Community Center in Cary from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14 through Saturday, Sept. 16.
While the VEAC is a great opportunity within the veterans’ community, Wake County veterans don’t have to wait for events like the VEAC to apply for benefits. The Wake County Veterans Services Office has been offering facilitative services for Veterans Affairs’ and North Carolina veterans’ benefits since 1981. Its main office hours are by appointment from 8:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. at 3000 Falstaff Road, Raleigh, Monday through Friday.
In addition, Wake County offers appointments at the county’s Northern and Southern Regional Centers once per month (second and fourth respectively). Call 919 212 VETS to schedule an appointment.
Veterans Services also provides home visits to veterans physically unable to meet at an office. Some of the most sought after VA benefits are VA Compensation for those veterans who were injured during their military service, VA Pension for economically challenged wartime veterans with exorbitant medical expenses, VA Education and VA Healthcare. The Wake County VSOs are technical experts who are in tune with the VA and its expectations for claims’ outcomes.
Wake County is North Carolina’s most veterans’ populous county where almost 60,000 veterans and their families call home. Like many other Wake County residents from other areas, veterans are separating from their North Carolina military base and not returning to their original home state. They may be drawn to the many conveniences North Carolina has to offer like the beaches and the mountains being hours away; or the state’s relatively “doable” cost of living; or the state’s amenable weather.
Veterans who visit the Wake County VSO can expect great customer service. The office consistently receives very high customer service surveys regularly exceeding the 90 percent threshold of “very satisfied” veterans. Some of the recent survey comments are “Could not have been more pleased with the service and information provided. Excellent staff.” 7/25/2017 2:02 p.m. and “Wow, what a breath of fresh air! I was met with smiles and treated professionally. Additionally, I was advised of the process and timing associated with my claims.” 7/20/2017 9:44 a.m.