The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs is seeking volunteers to help veterans. (Photo by Carmine Salvatore/Getty Images via Canva)

The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs is seeking individuals in Benton, Linn and Marion counties who are interested in serving aging veterans in their own communities through the Veteran Volunteer Program.

The goal of the program is to equip volunteers with information so they can help educate and connect veterans — primarily, seniors — to their earned benefits and other potential resources.

Volunteers work closely with the veteran volunteer coordinator and the accredited local veteran service officer or tribal veteran service officer in their area, locating veterans who may need assistance accessing their benefits in long-term care facilities, senior centers, libraries, mobile home parks and retirement communities, or wherever people gather.

The program is open to anyone 18 years or older. Volunteers are asked to commit to serving eight to 10 hours per month. A background check will be performed (at no cost to the volunteer) before working with veterans is permitted.

For those interested, the next training session for volunteers in Benton, Linn and Marion counties is scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 26 in Albany. To attend the training, an online interest form needs to be completed or contact Veteran Volunteer Coordinator Mark Newell by 4 p.m. Jan. 19.For more information or to register, visit oregonvetvolunteer.com or contact Newell at 971-720-8911 or ODVA_VeteranVolunteer@odva.oregon.gov.