Chicago added to Veterans Economic Communities Initiative
CHICAGO — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced the expansion of a program aimed at increasing education and employment opportunities to America’s Veterans to an additional to 25 new communities, including Chicago. The Veterans Economic Communities Initiative brings together local and national partners to coordinate services for veterans, service members and military families.
Announcement of the expanded communities was made by senior VA officials to more than 500 leaders from the business, nonprofit, philanthropic and local government communities attending VA’s two-day inaugural VECI Policy Academy. The Policy Academy serves as a forum for local, regional and national partner organizations to engage in honest dialog about veteran economic issues; receive interactive training on national philanthropic and community-based best practices; and hear from leaders in the field about emerging data, trends and opportunities.
“History has shown that when you give veterans an opportunity to succeed, they go above and beyond. And we as a nation owe them those opportunities to succeed,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald. “There is a tremendous amount of goodwill from the American people towards veterans; they want to help. Through public-private partnerships like those formed and harnessed by VA’s Economic Communities Initiative, we will now be able to provide better networks and tools to veterans in 50 communities nationwide.”