Navigating benefits, mental health and finances after serving in the military can be overwhelming, but in St. Landry Parish, veterans have somewhere new to turn for assistance in all of this.
It's called Veterans Point Louisiana, located on W Martin Luther King Jr Dr, and it was started by Veronica Mallet, who has family ties to the cause.
"I have a son in the military right now that is in the air force. Sister in law is a CSM, uncle CSM. I have a nephew in the navy, and it just goes on and on," says Mallet, explaining the driving force for her work.
"My husband and I have been doing this for ten years from our home where we were giving up time at work and doing it on the weekends and what not. We finally got blessed to be here, and we would like to do more," says Mallet.
The new facility has room for her to do more, too. The first room is full of volunteers, ready to help veterans access their benefits, start new careers, connect them with mental health care and peer support.
The second room is dedicated to clothing for homeless and struggling veterans, all for free.
"Veterans shouldn't have to pay for everything. They gave all they have to give for us already. Everything we should be doing is to be giving back," says Mallet.
She has an opportunity for the public to get involved in giving back too.
The purchase of a $12 raffle ticket will enter you for a drawing to win $1200 worth of gas gift cards. All of the money spent will go toward the Veteran's Point mission.
Click here to get your ticket or visit Veteran's Point at 308 W. MLK Jr. Drive Suite A in the old North Elementary School in Opelousas.