Posted on Sep 23, 2020
RallyPoint News
Kentucky is known for its bourbon, bluegrass and horseracing. Perhaps less well known is its number of veterans — 300,000 strong, a full 7.5% of the state’s population. And commonwealth veterans have earned benefits that you can use right now. Take advantage of these Kentucky-specific programs and live life to the fullest after your military service:

1. Connect with your Veterans Benefits Field Representative (VBFR).

If you haven’t done so already, start by meeting with your VBFR, although there are some service delays due to the coronavirus pandemic. These services are free, and these staff are certified to counsel you in applying for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits. Work together to apply for VA compensation and pensions, the GI Bill, health care, home loans and more. They may also help you access state-offered benefits (see below).

Learn more: Find your local field office by visiting this page,, and choosing the county where you live. You can also call [login to see] .

2. Get housing assistance through the state.

If you are or know a Kentucky veteran who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, assistance is available through the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs (KDVA) Homeless Veterans Program. Support is in two areas:

• Emergency assistance. Receive one-time cash assistance to obtain or maintain rental housing or utilities such as electricity, gas or water.

• Resource location assistance. Get help finding shelter, food assistance, substance use counseling and other supports for you or your family.

Learn more: Additional information is at or call a Kentucky Homeless Veterans Program Coordinator at [login to see] .

3. Enroll in VA health care.

As a veteran in Kentucky, you have access to VA health care through eight different VA medical centers and 27 community-based outreach clinics (CBOC) throughout the state.
Learn more: Master enrollment details at, apply and then make an appointment at the nearest Kentucky VA medical center or CBOC. You can also visit a VA Vet Center in your state (
4. Look into the state’s tuition waiver program.

Kentucky waives tuition for the children, stepchildren, spouses and unremarried spouses of service members who died in active duty or as a result of a service-connected disability, or of veterans living with a 100% service-connected disability or who are totally disabled (with a nonservice-connected pension with wartime service). Sophi Thompson, coordinator of Kentucky’s Tuition Waiver Program, said in a recent VA blog that the program “is so popular that people move to Kentucky specifically to take advantage of this benefit.”
Learn more: Review the details and apply at

5. Start a business.

After the military, you may choose a career in health care, high tech, the service industry or something else. Or you can become an entrepreneur. Here are a few resources to get your veteran-owned business off the ground in the Bluegrass State:

• Consult with one of Kentucky’s Small Business Development Centers (SBDC). This is a nationwide business assistance network partly funded by Congress through a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The network ( gives you access to free and at-cost training to start, grow and expand your small business. Kentucky’s SBDC Network State Office ( oversees an in-state network of 13 SBDC centers, which is staffed by experienced business consultants. The network provides general and veteran-specific guidance through training workshops, market research, loan packaging, financial projections and other services. Find some veteran-specific information at the download page,

• Locate other trainings. Also check out SBA’s Boots to Business training offerings for transitioning service members, veterans and military spouses at In addition, find local, no-cost business advisers at, and

• Get verified as veteran-owned. Once your veteran business is set up, get help getting verified from VA’s Office of Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization ( and start doing business directly with VA, the second largest federal agency.

More resources for Kentucky veterans

• Download the PDF book outlining benefits for Kentucky veterans at

• Search the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs:
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