October 12, 2010
WASHINGTON - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is launching a new television advertisement encouraging Veterans to take full advantage of the VA benefits and services they have earned. The ad is one step in a robust outreach effort aimed at welcoming returning Servicemembers and easing their transition from military to Veteran status.
"VA is committed to reaching all Veterans to say 'thank you for your service', and to let them know about the health care, benefits and services available to help them meet whatever challenges lie ahead," said VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki. "Each day all across the United States, men and women in uniform return from military service, and we want to do our part to welcome them home."
The 30-second ad, focuses on today's generation of Veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, and shows the path a Veteran might follow from boots on the battlefield to addressing possible health issues, going to college, finding employment and buying a home. The ad emphasizes the goal of a seamless transition between the Department of Defense and VA as military Servicemembers hang up their uniforms and enroll with VA.
VA has targeted six cities to broadcast the ad based on the number of Veterans returning from service to those locations this fall. The cities are Raleigh, Norfolk, Va., Savannah, Ga., Seattle, Wash., Watertown, N.Y. and El Paso, Texas.
All the locations have a large military population in their viewing area. In the Raleigh and Fayetteville, the ad will run on WNCN (NBC), WRAL (CBS), WRAZ (Fox), WTVD (ABC), as well as on local Fayetteville cable channels.
The actor in the ad is Operation Iraqi Freedom Veteran Robert Kugler—a former Marine currently pursuing an acting career in Los Angeles. The uniformed personnel in the background are also Veterans, as are the students, the father and husband walking out of the house, and the doctor/instructor—an Air Force Veteran who served in Vietnam.
This is the first of a series of broadcast and cable television ads to be produced and aired over the next several months to inform returning Veterans of the many benefits and services they have earned as a result of their military service.
"This campaign is aimed at our newest Veterans, like the men and women right here at Fort Bragg," said Fayetteville VA Medical Center Director Elizabeth Goolsby. "It is imperative that we reach out to them so they're aware of just how much is available to them through the VA, benefits they have earned by serving this country."
Broadcast organizations interested in obtaining a broadcast quality copy of the 30-second spot to run as a Public Service Announcement may download a copy at http://ftplac1.dgfastchannel.com/download/VAWLAO110-2H.mov. The video can be viewed on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJneXGf5GAc.
For more information on VA benefits, visit http://www.va.gov/MyVA.