About Us

The West Michigan Veterans Coalition is a collaboration between local military friendly organizations that provide support, information, and resources to those that have served or are serving in the Armed Forces and their Families, employers, and other organizations throughout West Michigan.
Our mission is to improve the lives of anyone who has served or is serving in the Armed Forces and their Families by connecting them to resources including education, employment, healthcare, and quality of life services.

In 2013, the West Michigan Veterans Coalition was selected by the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency to implement Altarum Institute’s no-wrong-door collaborative Veteran Community Action Team (VCAT). The model is designed to enhance the delivery of services from public, private, and nonprofit organizations to veterans and their family members. The VCAT aims to institute a community-based veterans’ system of care through the establishment of broad-based coalitions of veterans’ service organizations, health and community service providers, veterans and their family members, and other stakeholders.

The WMVC has formed four working subcommittees to address specific issues facing veterans in the community. The subcommittees meet periodically throughout the quarter to identify and alleviate barriers in education, employment, healthcare, and quality of life.

Armed Forces Thanksgiving has partnered with West Michigan Veterans Coalition (WMVC) as a major beneficiary. The annual Armed Forces Thanksgiving Luncheon brings military-connected individuals, high school students, and business leaders in the West Michigan community together to understand, honor and express thanks to those that are serving or have served in our Armed Forces. This “Salute” encourages the next generation to have a sincere appreciation for all the men and women who have served, on our behalf.

Our Story

Over the Years

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2009

Organized

Organized the Veteran Stand Down for Grand Rapids, MI. Original members; VA Healthcare for Homeless Veterans, Michigan Rehabilitation Services, Goodwill Industries, VetCenter.
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2010-2012

Forum Created

Greater Grand Rapids Veterans Forum was created by Goodwill Industries held quarterly meetings with local veteran service providers to learn about what and how to access services for our veterans.
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2013-2014

Name Change

The Greater Grand Rapids Veterans Forum changed name to West Michigan Veterans Coalition.

Developed an Advisory Board and four committees: Education, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life. Still maintains quarterly meetings, but now is actively working together as a unit to provide better services to our Military-Connected individuals and their Families.

Apart of a statewide initiative with the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency (MVAA) and Altarum Institute to implement the “no wrong door” Veteran Community Action Team (VCAT).

The WMVC has grown to more than 100 state and local Veterans’ agencies that share information on resources and programs for education, employment, health care, and quality of life.

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2016

Non-Profit Organization Established

The WMVC obtains non-profit 501(c)3 status. Creates an Executive Board to govern.
Partnered with the Armed Forces Committee to be main beneficiary of the annual Armed Forces Thanksgiving Luncheon.
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2017

Meetings

Members decided to start meeting bi-monthly in order to communicate regarding the resources in West Michigan.
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2019

Committees

Established committees to support the areas of education, employment, healthcare, and quality of life.

With donations from the Armed Forces Thanksgiving Committee, 2 scholarships were created: the Armed Forces Scholarship and the Armed Forces Dependent Scholarship.

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2020

Continued Growth

The WMVC grows to over 300 organizations and 600 individuals.