Finding Transition Success Through A Collaborative Community

Author: Tyler Freeman.

See original post on LinkedIn HERE.

Have you ever considered what it is about your next community that provides value to you and your family as you transition from service? Have you found organizations that bring together the best support network possible to help ease your transition burden? At VETLANTA, we believe that we know Atlanta better than anyone when it comes to the needs of veterans and their families. That’s why we use our community collaboration model to bridge the gaps to transition and empower veterans to find success though our network of Atlanta-veterans focused for-profit, non-profit, and governmental organizations like the Georgia VECTR Center, Team RWB, and the Headstrong Project.

VETLANTA, through the years, has worked towards one goal: Making Atlanta the premier destination for veterans and their families. One of the ways we do that is by facilitating a successful transition. We’re held up by our 5 Pillars: Business, Employment, Education, Healthcare, and Housing , all of which are led by volunteers who have strong ties to the communities and work to further causes such as veterans hiring initiatives, veterans housing issues, and advocating for veterans in higher education. Our pillars focus on the areas that veterans most commonly have questions about. Using our pillars as guides, we then bring together the best organizations we can find to help address the needs of veterans and their families.

By using a community-based, collaborative, and inclusive approach, VETLANTA has become the largest club for veterans in Atlanta, and we’ve done it without ever charging a single membership due or entry fee, and we never will. We rely on support from corporate partners like Coca-Cola, UPS, and the AMB Group, who recognize the value that veterans bring to their corporations and to the Atlanta area. Our summits, hosted quarterly, bring together the best organizations that have a physical and impactful presence in Atlanta to share with the veterans and their families the services and activities that are available to them through our partners. We even feature some Veteran Owned Small Businesses too. If it provides value to the veterans of Atlanta, we want to know about it. If you, your business, or employer provides this impact, we’d love to talk to you in hopes of having you on the team.

VETLANTA focuses on Atlanta. We’ve been asked to expand to other areas in and around the Southeast and we’ve chosen to remain committed to driving significant impact to the veterans and military families that call Atlanta home. Fortunately, we’re not the only ones that have recognized the value of the community-based model in delivering real results for our neighbors. Organizations like Combined Arms in Houston, the Four State CVEB, and the America’s Warrior Partnership (AWP) affiliate program all recognize the value that community-based, community-led resource aggregators provide to veterans in all stages of their transition.

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We’re always looking for new ways to improve our service to veterans and their families, and most recently, we recognized that while we had a great view of the ecosystem in Atlanta, we were missing a critical piece of helping veterans in need: case management. So, we partnered with a new organization: The Warrior Alliance (an affiliate of AWP). Using their Warrior Navigators, VETLANTA and other Atlanta-based service organizations and corporations can now refer veterans who request services to The Warrior Alliance and leverage their full-time case workers and highly selective partners to offer services to veterans at no cost. Together, we’re able to not only find the right organizations doing the right things at the 30,000 foot level, but now we have the capability to deliver a high-touch, high-impact experience to almost every veteran that needs our help. This can only be accomplished through open dialogue and open collaboration at the community level.

Before you transition, do some digging, find the resources and the community-based, collaborative organizations like VETLANTA to help you and your family transition to your next mission. 

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Tyler Freeman is a MBA/JM Student at Emory University in Atlanta, GA and the Chief Marketing Officer of VETLANTA.

To learn more about Tyler and VETLANTA, please click HERE

The following article appears in the Spring 2019 Stars and Stripes Transition Guide

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