Elgin American Legion Post hosts monthly veterans services days

Elgin American Legion Post 57 is making it more convenient for military veterans to access available services.

Elgin American Legion Post 57 is making it more convenient for military veterans to access available services.

"We're trying to establish a central place in Elgin where veterans can go to see service officers," Post 57 Adjutant Don Sleeman said.

On the fourth Friday of each month, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the legion's east side hall, 820 N. Liberty St., the post makes available representatives from various agencies to answer questions, point a veteran in the right direction for services or, in some cases, provide services that day, on site.

Sleeman said that at the Oct. 27 event, staff from the Edward Hines Hospital Outreach will be at Post 57 to dispense flu and pneumonia shots to veterans.

"This is an excellent partnership that the Elgin American Legion Post has fostered, bringing Hines VA Hospital, the Illinois Department of Employment Security and the Kane County Veterans Assistance Commission all under the American Legion's roof for this outreach event. This furthers the mission that we share with all of our partners, which is to provide the best possible services to our veterans in a convenient way," Jacob Zimmerman, Superintendent of the Veterans Assistance Commission of Kane County, said.

Sleeman noted that the Hines VA representatives also are there to answer questions and to aid in getting veterans to the health care services they may need. The Department of Employment Security staff can assist a veteran in locating jobs and filling out applications. And, along with someone from the Kane County Veterans Assistance Commission, a Hanover Township Veterans Service Officer is there to assist with tasks that include filing and checking on claims filed with the VA and research other sorts of benefits that might be available to veterans.

In May 2016 Hines VA unveiled its Community-Based Outpatient Clinic on the first floor of the Prairie Pointe Medical Building, 4885 Hoffman Blvd. in Hoffman Estates, relocating in the bigger space about six miles from its prior operation at 450 W. Dundee Ave. in Elgin.

For qualifying veterans, Hines offers a "medi-car" program to get back and forth from the clinic. There also is complimentary transportation services to and from the new CBOC to the Hines VA Hospital not far from Maywood.

Hanover Township provides transportation services for senior and disabled veterans, with a suggested donation is $1 each way. For qualifying veterans, Zimmerman said the Ride-In-Kane program may be able to get them to the clinic in Hoffman Estates.

Still, Sleeman noted that since some veterans don't have transportation and some are older and may have trouble getting around, having the one-stop setup once a month at Post 57 makes it more convenient for those looking for assistance from the VA and other programs.

The Friday services available at the Elgin American Legion Post are offered at no charge to qualifying veterans, Sleeman said.

"All you need is a piece of paper showing you are an honorably discharged veteran and documentation for filing claims," Sleeman said.

In recent months nearly a dozen veterans have stopped by for the Friday offering, Sleeman said.

"We hope that by getting the word out more attend," Sleeman said.

For information, email or phone 847-741-2358.

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