Veterans Applying for Retraining Top 30,000 and Climbing

Photo courtesy of the Dept. of Veterans Affairs.

The Hire Heroes Act of 2011 included a section for the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP). It offers up to 12 months of training assistance to unemployed Veterans.

The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the Department of Labor rolled out VRAP July 1, 2012 and as of July 9 it’s received more than 30,000 applications.

Veterans who qualify  for VRAP are:

  • Are at least 35 but no more than 60 years old
  • Are unemployed on the date of application
  • Received an other than dishonorable discharge
  • Are not be eligible for any other VA education benefit program (e.g.: the Post-9/11 GI Bill, Montgomery GI Bill, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Assistance)
  • Are not in receipt of VA compensation due to un-employability
  • Are not enrolled in a federal or state job training program

The program is limited to 45,000 participants through September 30, 2012, and 54,000 participants from October 1, 2012, through March 31, 2014.

Details on the VRAP are available HERE.

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Girl Scouts Hand Deliver Cookies to Wound Warriors

The members of Girl Scout Troop 81737, of South Brunswick, donated 21 cases of cookies on June 22 to members of the U.S. armed forces undergoing rehabilitation in Bethesda, Md. Photo courtesy The Sentinel.

A troop of Girl Scouts has been sending their cookies to deployed soldiers for seven years, but not in 2012.

Instead, Troop 81737 of South Brunswick donated 21 cases of Girl Scout cookies to the Bethesda Naval Hospital and delivered them in person according to a report in the  Sentinel.

The seven Scout Ambassadors, who will be high school seniors next year, traveled to Bethesda, Md. on June 22 to hand out boxes of cookies to hospitalized troops at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, locally called the Bethesda Naval Hospital.

They passed out 15 cases of cookies to wounded servicemen and servicewomen at the hospital’s residence hall, where they are rehabilitating. Visitors must be 18 years old to enter the hospital, so the girls, aged 16 and 17, handed over six more cases to be given to those being treated within the hospital.

The troop started sending cookies to military personnel serving overseas because their leader’s son was a U.S. Marine. Gina Zielinski has served as troop leader since the girls were Brownies.

The troop raised more than $1,000 to cover the cost of their trip to visit the injured service members.

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