Charlotte Honors Veterans with a Network of Support
Americans will honor their military heroes with everything from parades to discounts to a special ice cream flavor this Veterans Day, but veterans in Charlotte and across North Carolina also have a vast network of support year-round. In Charlotte, organizations such as Charlotte Bridge Home and Patriots Path help veterans successfully transition to civilian life with individual assistance and workshops that connect them to city, state and federal resources.
And don’t forget Angie’s List, which military members enlist across the country for expert advice and provider recommendations.
For many veterans, the first concern upon leaving the service is finding stable employment. Charlotte companies big and small value the skills and job training that come with military experience, and the city’s biggest industry – banking – makes a special effort to hire veterans. In particular, Bank of America and Wells Fargo offer jobs programs for members of the armed services. Bank of America, which is headquartered in Charlotte, announced earlier this year that it would hire 10,000 veterans and service members by 2019. For veterans interested in non-banking professions, databases at websites such as StayNC and We Hire Heroes offer updated employment opportunities for job seekers in Charlotte with a military background.
The challenges for military families go far beyond employment, however. Sometimes, it’s trying to learn which service providers are reliable in an unfamiliar city. Sometimes, it’s the difficulty of making household decisions when the deployed family member is usually the one who takes on such matters.
“When the service member is deployed, the stay-at-home spouse suddenly finds themselves handling a lot of jobs that might have been divided up before,” Kathleen Moakler, government relations director for the National Military Family Association, told Angie’s List earlier this year. “So Angie’s List gives them a way to vet these folks and see what other people have said about them.”
Moakler’s warning for military families, no matter where they are: Be wary of payment plans. Unscrupulous service providers might be tempted to charge military members an exorbitant amount of interest, because they know bad credit can be a threat to security clearance.
Most service providers, however, are the opposite – they appreciate military service so much that they offer discounts and special deals to veterans and military families. Nearly 3,000 companies on Angie’s List offer such discounts. It’s their way of saying thank you on Veterans Day and every day.