Veterans can learn about services at event

Noel Lyn Smith

FARMINGTON — Several veterans service organizations will provide information and advice about resources for veterans during an event later this month at San Juan College.

The Seventh Annual Veterans Awareness Day will start at 10 a.m. March 17 in the 9000 rooms of the Henderson Fine Arts Center at the college.

Linda Shannon, veterans justice outreach specialist for the New Mexico Veterans Administration Health Care System, said the event is designed to help veterans who are students at the college, but it is also open to all veterans.

“We want to reach out,” Shannon said.

Two attorneys have confirmed they will attend the event to offer advice on civil issues like eviction and child support.

There may also be an attorney certified with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at the event to help with issues such as denial of benefits, but organizers are waiting for confirmation, Shannon said.

“The legal side is just one piece of it,” she said.

Representatives from Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program, the Veterans Justice Outreach Program and the New Mexico Department of Veterans' Services are also scheduled to attend the event.

Among the participating programs are Goodwill, Presbyterian Medical Services and Sexual Assault Services of Northwest New Mexico.

Often, Shannon said, new veterans are not aware of or informed about the benefits and services available to them and events like this help educate them.

The San Juan College Veteran Center, which provides veterans with transitional assistance as they earn an education, is hosting the event.

For more information about the Veterans Awareness Day, contact the San Juan College Veteran Center at 505-566-3970 or

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-546-4636.