A new guide for veterans offering information about a plethora of different services and resources was unveiled this week.
The kick-off ceremony for the Bronx Veteran & Military Resource Guide, which wiil be available both at local community boards and also online, was held at the Samuel Young American Legion Post 620 on Monday, March 28.
The guide includes information on a variety of topics including education, employment, entrepreneurship, housing, mental health and veterans discounts and organizations.
Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.’s Bronx Veterans Advisory Council developed it. The group is comprised of veterans from local communities. Its chairman is Joe Mondello.
Diaz addressed the gathering of our nations heroes to celebrate the book’s release, saying that he is proud to support veterans who have given so much for the safety and security of the nation.
“It is my hope that this guide will serve as a key resource for both veterans and service providers across the borough, and I encourage our servicemen and servicewomen to take advantage of the ‘Bronx Veteran & Military Resource Guide,’ said Diaz.
Diaz’s VAC performs a variety of things, said Mondello, including helping to create the Bronx Veterans Court, an initiative to help veterans charged with crimes get back on track; toy and turkey drives for veteran families around the holidays; and a breakfast honoring veterans during BronxWeek, said Mondello.
The creation of the guide was an effort to coordinate information that would be useful to veterans across the borough, he said, adding that the concept for a guide was first conceived in early 2015.
“Community boards are your first point of interaction when you move into the neighborhood,” said Mondello, adding “We felt it was our responsibility to provide veterans with resource information.”
“This is a great start,” said Salimbene of the final product, added that he suggested that child care services be included, as it can sometimes eliminate a barrier for veterans seeking employment.
Pat Devine, another veterans advocate with four decades of experience, received an award from the Bronx Veterans Advisory Council during the ceremony for his service.
Among the dignitaries attending the event who also addressed the veterans were Loree Suton, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Veteran Affairs; Jamal Othman. Deputy Director at NYS Division of Veterans’ Affairs and Shawn Kingston, Bronx VA Medical Center.
On hand to learn more about the resource guide were representatives from community boards 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12.
Elected officials who sent representatives to the meeting included Senator Gustavo Rivera, Assemblyman Marcos Crespo, Assemblyman Michael Benedetto, Assemblyman Michael Blake and Councilman James Vacca.
To find the guide online, visit the borough president’s website at on.nyc.gov/