GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - The Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency announced July 1 that Michigan military veterans and their families now have access to free financial counseling through a state pilot program.

The MVAA's Michigan Veterans Trust Fund (MVTF) recently approved a 15-month agreement with GreenPath Financial Wellness Inc., a nonprofit financial counseling organization, to provide service for Michigan veterans.

The program can help veterans who are struggling to manage their finances or overcome crippling debt. Lindell Holm, director of the MVTF, said the goal is to help veterans gain financial stability.

“GreenPath has a long history of educating consumers – including veterans – and helping them achieve a healthy financial situation,” said Holm, a Marine veteran. “They offer practical financial education that can help our veteran population to better understand personal financial issues such as credit scores and loan terms.”

Financial counseling consists of a one-on-one session that typically takes an hour and can be done over the phone or at a GreenPath branch office.

Additional free financial counseling for veterans includes: 

  • Housing counseling, in which renters and homeowners learn to avoid delinquencies and explore options to avoid foreclosure and eviction.
  • Credit report review to help veterans understand credit reports, credit scoring and how to manage their credit score.
  • Financial wellness tools, including webinars, a digital education course, an online support community and a digital journaling tool.

The initial agreement with GreenPath will run through Sept. 30, 2020, and the MVTF Board of Trustees will decide whether to renew the program for each fiscal year -- Oct. 1 to Sept. 30 -- starting in September 2020.

Interested veterans can call the MVAA's resource center at 1-800-642-4838 or visit michiganveterans.com.

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