Opportunity & Legal Services

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

DAV Services and Benefits

Scott Gelbard Denver based financial advisor, is a strong supporter of the Disabled American Veteran’s Organization (DAV), and often promotes volunteer activities available with them. The DAV provides a wide variety of services to the nation’s veterans and is dedicated to making sure that veterans receive the care that they need.

Hospital Volunteering

The Department of Veterans Affairs operates medical facilities throughout the country, providing hospital, clinic and long-term care facilities to veterans. These facilities often need volunteers to help with a wide range of duties, including working with patients or participating in recreational programs. In addition, patients often need escorts for various functions and medical appointments. Volunteers can provide assistance for everything from serving coffee to providing companionship to veterans who are disabled or aged.

Drive a Van

Veterans protect the freedom of all American’s, and one of the volunteer functions that Scott Gelbard suggests to pay them back for their service is through the Drive A Veteran service. Volunteering to drive a veteran allows those who live in remote areas that may not be close to VA clinics or hospitals undergo medical treatments, obtain health checkups and receive medical testing they may need based on their disability. Drive a Veteran is coordinated by Hospital Service Coordinators at the 172 VA medical facilities throughout the country as part of the DAV Transportation Network.

Local Services

There are many local services that can be provided through volunteers for veterans. A Local Veteran’s Assistance Program may have the perfect volunteer position available for those who want to pay a veteran back for their service to the country. Veterans may need grocery shopping assistance or errands run that they are unable to perform. There are even volunteer positions available for yard work, painting, home repairs or house cleaning services for veterans who are no longer able to perform those functions on their own.

Advocate Services

For those who want to be active in the defense of veterans, volunteering as a veteran’s advocate is a way to keep public and political leaders informed of the issues that face veterans when they return to a normal life. Through the DAV legislative grassroots campaign, volunteers can present information to political and public leaders, educate the public and provide support to veterans across the country. Currently, veteran advocates are focused on protecting veteran benefits and services from budget cuts in Washington DC, among other issues such as healthcare and education benefits that could affect veterans throughout the country.

Although the DAV benefits greatly from monetary donations, volunteers are the backbone of the organization. Donations of cash are welcome and applied to the services received by the men and women who fight for the freedoms American’s enjoy, but it takes a strong volunteer force to carry out the many services offered through DAV. Volunteering for the DAV is not only beneficial for the veterans who served the country, but provide benefits to those who volunteer as well. The 2013 recipient of the Jesse Brown Scholarship, which is awarded to young DAV volunteers each year, Max Freeman of Northport, New York, said that he found volunteering for the veterans very rewarding as it is a way to help America’s heroes. He says he “learned a lot from veterans” and that he thought of them as role models.

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