Morgana provided an overview of the White River Junction VETCenter.  She shared that they offer confidential help for Veterans, service members, and their families at no cost in a non-medical setting. Their services include counseling for needs such as depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and the psychological effects of military sexual trauma (MST). A VET Center can also connect veterans with more support in VA and the community. No one can access VETCenter mental health records, but the VET Center staff can see VA records.
Her mission is to more broadly share the public about the VETCenter. The center mental health services come at no cost to the veteran. All services provided are confidential and not reported in the VA System.  Thus it is a safe place for Veteran to talk about concerns and struggles.  The individuals who get service often find a community of individuals who understand them better than others  The develop a sense of comradery. VETCenter counselors and outreach staff, many of whom are Veterans themselves, are experienced and prepared to discuss the tragedies of war, loss, grief and transition after trauma.  Services are provided to family members if they meet the qualification criteria.  Her goal is to try to help every individual who reaches out to them.
Morgana let us know that the rules have changed and she can serve any family member who veteran family member has died by suicide.  She handed out packet of information that included qualifying criteria. Learn more at
She did say that a veteran should assume the don’t quality until the speak to a VET Center staff member but here is what is published and criteria. Having received certain medals can make a veteran eligible too.  A veteran must reach out to the VET Center, they cannot call veteran prior to the veteran asking for help.
If you’re a Veteran or service member (including National Guard and Reserves), you’re eligible if you meet any of these service requirements:
  • You served on active duty in any combat theater or area of hostility, or
  • You provided mortuary services or direct emergency medical care to treat the casualties of war while on active duty, or 
  • You were a member of an unmanned aerial vehicle crew that provided direct support to operations in a combat theater or area of hostility, or 
  • You served on active duty in response to a national emergency or major disaster declared by the president, or under orders of the governor or chief executive of a state in response to a disaster or civil disorder, or
  • You’re a current or former member of the Coast Guard who participated in a drug interdiction operation, or
  • You’re a current member of the Reserve Component assigned to a military command in a drill status, including active Reserves, and you need to address a behavioral health condition or psychological trauma that is related to your military service

If you’re a Veteran or service member (including National Guard and Reserves), you’re also eligible for Vet Center services if any of these descriptions is true for you:

  • You’re a Vietnam Era Veteran who used VETCenter services before January 2, 2013, or
  • You experienced military sexual trauma (no matter your gender or service era), or
  • You currently use any covered VA educational assistance benefits
Morgana drives a Freightliner throughout the region to reach veterans where they live.  The truck has a bathroom and shower, satellite communication system, and a generator.  She has established a drive through farmers market to supply food to those in need, you don’t have to be a veteran to get food insecurity help.
Please encourage veterans you know to use the VA Hospital at least once a year to help the hospital maintain the level of service they want to provide. Unique visits help assure that services will continue.
The VETCenter is an “hands up” not a “hand out”.