Veterans Task Force Greater Springfield Chamber

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Initiative by the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Springfield, VA, to support veterans and military spouses starting/growing businesses and finding employment in Greater Springfield.

Initiative by the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Springfield, VA, to support veterans and military spouses starting/growing businesses and finding employment in Greater Springfield.

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  • 1. Department of Labor America’s Heroes at Work April 9, 2010
  • 2. Ronald Drach U.S. Department of Labor Veterans’ Employment & Training Service Natache Muschette U.S. Department of Labor Gretchen Martens Founder and CEO, Homeward Deployed, Inc. Chair, Veterans Task Force at the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce
  • 3. 1. Introduce the Veterans Task Force at the programs designed to put America’s veterans and military spouses on the road to economic self-sustainability. 2. Explore ways to partner with the Department of Labor to put America’s veterans to work.
  • 4. Suicide Violent Depression Crimes Unemployment Substance Child Abuse Maltreatment Homelessness Divorce
  • 5. To welcome and support veterans and their families, connecting them to the Greater Springfield Business Community.
  • 6. To produce a Blueprint for Success that can be nationally replicated in any of the 3500+ community Chambers in the U.S. in 2011
  • 7. 1. Supporting veterans and military spouses in starting, relocating, and/or expanding businesses in Greater Springfield 2. Educating and supporting Chamber businesses about hiring veterans, especially wounded veterans, and military spouses
  • 8. Supporting Veteran Business Owners
  • 9. 1. Educating and connecting veterans with critical resources ◦ The community Chamber is often where entrepreneurs first seek information on how to start businesses, especially in rural areas ◦ It can be daunting and time consuming to wade through the myriad websites and books to figure out the steps to starting a business
  • 10. 2. Mentoring veteran entrepreneurs starting businesses or business owners growing their businesses. ◦ Community chambers are a safe place to get your feet wet in the business world ◦ Chamber members are well-connected and can make personal introductions to key constituencies ◦ Established business owners have a tremendous wealth of common sense knowledge to share
  • 11. ◦ May: Recruitment of mentors ◦ June: Outreach to veteran business owners ◦ September: Brown Bag Seminar on becoming certified as a veteran-owned or service-disabled veteran owned small business (VOSB or SDVOSB) ◦ October: Follow up workshop intensive that walks veterans through the paperwork and process.
  • 12. Educating Community Businesses About Hiring Veterans
  • 13. “Cool, you jumped out of helicopters! But how will you help my printing business? Overlooking ◦ Leadership ◦ Work Ethic ◦ Integrity ◦ Self-Responsibility
  • 14. When you can’t see past the wheelchair… …you miss resilience, problem-solving, determination, and flexibility. If you think you know what PTSD is because you’ve been to the movies… …you miss courage, risk-taking, loyalty, and perseverance.
  • 15.  Providing resources for community business owners who hire a service-disabled veteran.  Coaching veterans returning to the civilian workforce, and the caregiver networks of service-disabled veterans who make that transition possible.
  • 16. ◦ April: Outreach to Wounded Warrior Units ◦ May: Outreach to Other Chambers ◦ October: Brown Bag Seminar ◦ November: Networking Breakfast ◦ November: Luncheon Symposium
  • 17. A $30,000 One-time Seed Money Grant Covering ◦ 25-30% FTE Contract Consultant to administer the rollout for eight months and prepare the Blueprint for Success ◦ Extra administrative time and costs incurred by the Greater Springfield Chamber ◦ Sponsorship of our November Luncheon on Hiring America’s Heroes in the Community
  • 18.  May: Social Media Campaign sharing our progress  July: A series of webinars or tele-conferences for other Chambers interested in starting their own Veterans Task Force  September: A series of group coaching calls for Chambers gearing up to launch a Veterans Task Force  Early 2011: Initial Open Source Blueprint for Success documenting a step-by-step plan for launching a Veterans Task Force, including all outreach strategies, marketing materials, programs, best practices,
  • 19.  Seed money to create a Blueprint For Success that can be distributed to every community Chamber by early 2011  Endorsement of the Veterans Task Force  A Point of Contact to serve as a resource
  • 20. Gretchen Martens, M.A. Founder and CEO, Homeward Deployed www.HomewardDeployed.org Chair, Veterans Task Force, Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce www.SpringfieldChamber.org Phone: (703) 622-0919 Email: Gretchen@HomewardDeployed.org