SVHP logo - Student Veteran Health Program

Monday - Thursday: 9:00 AM-4:00 PM & Friday: 9:00 AM - 2:30 PM

 

Anyone hoping to connect with SFVA’s CCSF Student Veteran Health Program staff for assistance in enrolling in VA health care or other supportive services can contact:

Bridget Leach, LCSW
415-200-6933
Kathleen Mink, LCSW
415-254-6842

 

Bridget & Kathleen are both social workers with the SFVA Health Care System’s Student Veterans Health Program, usually located in person at CCSF, but now available remotely via work cell to speak over the phone or via VA video connect for tele-social work & tele-mental health.

For veterans who are not yet enrolled in VA health care, now would be an excellent time to do so. We are happy to answer any question, provide support and help veterans navigate VA health care enrollment & other services and resources now moving remote across schools, health care systems & other community resources.

If you have symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath or have either recently returned from China or have direct exposure to others diagnosed with Novel Coronavirus Disease seek medical care right away. Contact the SFVA’s Telephone Linked Care (TLC) Line (24/7) at 800-733-0502 and ask to speak with an Advice Nurse.

The SFVA Emergency Department (4150 Clement Street @ 42nd Ave, SF 94121) is open 24/7 for urgent and emergency medical and mental health issues. Veterans may also enroll in VA health care on-site at the SFVA Medical Center at Member Services (same address: 4150 Clement St, SF).

Additionally, the Veterans Crisis Line is available 24/7 at 800-273-8255, Press 1 for Veterans. 

If you are interested in information from the SFVA about the COVID-19 vaccine please reference the following web pages


SVHP EVENTS Summer 2022

WHAT: VA Health Care ID Cards and Enrollment: HAVE YOU TAKEN YOUR PHOTO FOR THE NEW VA ID CARD?
WHEN:

Tuesday, June 7th 2022 from 10:30AM - 3:30PM

Tuesday, August 2nd 2022 from 10:30AM - 3:30PM

WHERE:

In-Person: These events will be held in the Veterans Resource Center (VRC) 

CCSF Ocean Campus, Cloud Hall Room 333

DETAILS:
  • BRIAN A COPY OF YOUR DD-214 IF YOU ARE LOOKING TO ENROLL IN VA HEALTH CARE. YOU MUST BE ENROLLED IN VA HEALH CARE TO OBTAIN A VA ID CARD.
  • TWO FORMS OF ID ARE NEEDED TO GET YOUR PHOTO.
  • You will be able to take a photo for the new VA ID Card and Enroll in VA Health Care, it's all FREE! 
  • This is open to all CCSF Veterans, lets get connected with our VA and learn about other benefits and resources.

 


 

 

Veterans from all eras are reacting to the events in Afghanistan, such as the U.S withdrawal and the takeover by the Taliban.

You are not alone.

Veterans may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth the sacrifices they made. They may feel more moral distress about experiences they had during their service. It’s normal to feel this way. Talk with your friends and families, reach out to battle buddies, connect with a peer-to-peer network, or sign up for mental health services. Scroll down for a list common reactions and coping advice.

Resources Available Right Now

Common Reactions

In reaction to current events in Afghanistan, Veterans may:

  • Feel frustrated, sad, helpless, grief or distressed
  • Feel angry or betrayed
  • Experience an increase in mental health symptoms like symptoms of PTSD or depression
  • Sleep poorly, drink more or use more drugs 
  • Try to avoid all reminders or media or shy away from social situations
  • Have more military and homecoming memories

Veterans may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth the sacrifices they made. They may feel more moral distress about experiences they had during their service.

Veterans may feel like they need to expect and/or prepare for the worst. For example, they may:

  • Become overly protective, vigilant, and guarded
  • Become preoccupied by danger
  • Feel a need to avoid being shocked by, or unprepared for, what may happen in the future

Feeling distress is a normal reaction to negative events, especially ones that feel personal. It can be helpful to let yourself feel those feelings rather than try to avoid them. Often, these feelings will naturally run their course. If they continue without easing up or if you feel overwhelmed by them, the suggestions below can be helpful.

Strategies for Managing Ongoing Distress

At this moment, it may seem like all is lost, like your service or your sacrifices were for nothing. Consider the ways that your service made a difference, the impact it had on others’ lives or on your own life. Remember that now is just one moment in time and that things will continue to change.

It can be helpful to focus on the present and to engage in the activities that are most meaningful and valuable to you. Is there something you can do today that is important to you?  This can be as an individual, a family member, a parent, or a community member. Something that is meaningful to you in regard to your work or your spirituality? Such activities won’t change the past or the things you can’t control, but they can help life feel meaningful and reduce distress, despite the things you cannot change.

It can also help to consider your thinking. Ask yourself if your thoughts are helpful to you right now. Are there ways you can change your thinking to be more accurate and less distressing? For example, are you using extreme thinking where you see the situation as all bad or all good?  If so, try and think in less extreme terms. For example, rather than thinking “my service in Afghanistan was useless” consider instead “I helped keep Afghanistan safe.”

Finally, consider more general coping strategies that you may want to try including:

  • Engage in Positive Activities. Try to engage in positive, healthy, or meaningful activities, even if they are small, simple actions. Doing things that are rewarding, meaningful, or enjoyable, even if you don’t feel like it, can make you feel better.
  • Stay Connected. Spend time with people who give you a sense of security, calm, or happiness, or those who best understand what you are going through.
  • Practice Good Self Care. Look for positive coping strategies that help you manage your emotions. Listening to music, exercising, practicing breathing routines, spending time in nature or with animals, journaling, or reading inspirational text are some simple ways to help manage overwhelming or distressing emotions.
  • Stick to Your Routines. It can be helpful to stick to a schedule for when you sleep, eat, work, and do other day-to-day activities.
  • Limit Media Exposure. Limit how much news you take in if media coverage is increasing your distress.
  • Use a mobile app. Consider one of VA’s self-help apps (see https://www.ptsd.va.gov/appvid/mobile/) such as PTSD Coach which has tools that can help you deal with common reactions like, stress, sadness, and anxiety. You can also track your symptoms over time.
  • PTSD Coach Online. A series of online video coaches will guide you through 17 tools to help you manage stress. PTSD Coach Online is used on a computer, rather than a mobile device, and therefore can offer tools that involve writing.

If you develop your own ways of adapting to ongoing events and situations, you may gain a stronger sense of being able to deal with challenges, a greater sense of meaning or purpose, and an ability to mentor and support others in similar situations.

AFghanistan

Afghanistan: How Veterans can reconcile service

VetCenter

Afghanistan: How Veterans can learn from Vietnam Veterans 

Find a VA Facility near you.

FACILITY LOCATOR

Not sure where to start?

VA WELCOME KIT

Need to Contact VA?

Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 and press 1, visit the Crises Line Chat page, or Text 838255
Homeless Veteran Resources1-877-424-3838  or Chat with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
White House VA Hotline1-855-948-2311

Don't know what number to call?

1-800-MyVA411 (800-698-2411) is never the wrong number


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sign up for more topics of interest

 

AS A REMINDER – Veterans do NOT need to have a service-connected disability or be retired from the military to qualify for VA health care services.

Please join us and bring your questions! 

Learn more about our services!


Your Student Veteran Health Program Team

A collaboration between the San Francisco VA Health Care System and City College of San Francisco (CCSF), the Student Veteran Health Program (SVHP) began in August 2010 and has led the nation in providing an array of comprehensive services to student veterans on campus. Our Student Veteran Health Program Team consists of SF VA Health Care Enrollment Services, Social Work and Psychiatry.

The SVHP is one of ~26 funded VA programs under the Veterans Integrative To Academic Leadership (VITAL) initiative, part of the VA’s national effort to outreach and provide services to support student veterans.

What We Do

The SF VA Student Veteran Health Program at CCSF helps CCSF veterans with the following:

  1. Assist you with your enrollment in SFVA health care.
  2. Assist you in scheduling medical and mental health appointments.
  3. Aim to ease the experience of asking for and receiving help from the VA.
  4. Coordinate and provide a series of lectures on relevant topics for student Veterans
  5. Aim to support your well-being in an academic environment.
  6. Provides some on-campus mental health services.

Services are available for:

  • Time management
  • Attention and/or memory difficulties
  • Sleep issues
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Adjustment
  • Stress Management
  • Posttraumatic stress
  • Depression
  • Substance use
  • Anxiety.
  • TBI (traumatic brain injuries)
  • Medication Management
  • Social Work Services / Referrals to VA, Community, and/or Campus Resources
  • Consultation with and Training of Faculty and Staff (release of information by veteran student is required for any release of specific veteran information)  
Additional Resources

Veterans Crisis Line (24/7)

  • 800-273-TALK (8255), Press 1 for Veterans, toll-free, anonymous if you choose

VA’s National Call Center for Homeless Veterans (24/7)

  • 877-4AID VET (877-424-3838)
  • Provides free access to a trained counselor for local resources and assistance

Women Veterans Hotline (24/7)

  • 855-VA WOMEN (855-829-6636), toll-free, immediate assistance

County Veterans Service Office

  • Assistance with VA service-connected disability claims, benefits, vocational rehab, survivor/dependent benefits (i.e. Cal Vet fee waiver for dependents of 0%SC veterans)

San Francisco County Veterans Service Office (CVSO) Downtown

  • 2 Gough Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
  • 415-934-4200

San Francisco VA Medical Center

  • 4150 Clement Street (@ 42nd Avenue), SF 94112
  • 415-221-4810, Press 0 for the Operator
  • Website: www.sanfrancisco.va.gov
  • Emergency Room (available 24/7), Primary Care and Specialty Services by App

Vet Centers for Readjustment Counseling

  • VA health care enrollment is not required to receive Vet Center services
  • VA Community-based clinics providing individual, group, family readjustment counseling for combat veterans and veterans who have experienced military sexual trauma

Telephone Linked Care:

  • VA Advice Nurse for health concerns over the phone (24/7)
    • 415-752-1212 or 1-800-733-0502 (when outside of Bay Area)

San Francisco VA Health Care System:

  • 415) 221-4810, Press 0 for Operator

SFVA Emergency Services:

  • SFVA Medical Center Emergency Department – no appt. needed
    • 415-221-4810, Ext. 22052
  • SFVA Medical Center Mental Health Emergency Services – no appt. needed
    • 415-750-6674 (located inside the Emergency Department (ED))

Local SFVA Medical Primary Care Offices:

  • Medical Practice (Primary Care): 415-750-2129
    • Call to schedule an initial or follow up appointment
  • San Bruno VA Outpatient Clinic: 650-615-6001
    • Call to schedule an initial or follow up appointment
  • Downtown San Francisco VA Outpatient Clinic: 415-281-5100
    • Initial appointments are drop-in starting at 8 a.m. (1st come, 1st serve)

Local SF VA Mental Health Services:

  • SFVA Mental Health Same Day Clinic – Drop-in only, M-F, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., (not open on holidays)
    • 4150 Clement Street, Ground Floor, Bldg. 203, Access Center, GA-28
  • SFVA Behavioral Health Access Center – Appointments only
    • 4150 Clement Street, Ground Floor, Bldg. 203, Access Center, GA-28
    • 415-221-4810, Ext 24824