Illinois Joining Forces Unveils New Resources to Serve Illinois Military Service Members and Veterans

MARCH Marketing - Apr 7th, 2016

Beth Dillon
(773) 294-5356

CHICAGO, April 7, 2016 – Illinois Joining Forces (IJF), a statewide, public-private network of veteran and military service organizations, is continuing its mission to streamline critical resources for Illinois service members, veterans and their families (SMVF) with the launch of its IJF online resource center and call center.

Through the generous support of Boeing, IJF has partnered with Unite US and The Chicago Lighthouse to set a new standard in providing access to the resources SMVFs care about most, such as Housing, Employment, Benefits & Financial Services – both online at and by calling the IJF Call Center at: 1 (877) 236-7702.

“Illinois Joining Forces is pleased to work alongside Unite US and The Chicago Lighthouse on these two important endeavors. We recognize that service members and their families can get overwhelmed by finding the best support for their needs – and we’ve made it a priority to address this issue head-on,” said Ken Barber, IJF Executive Director. “Illinois is home to more than 700,000 military service members, veterans and their families – and now more than ever, they have a clear path to the wealth of resources available to them with IJF’s online resource center and call center.”

Over the past several months, Unite US has dramatically enhanced IJF’s resource directory for SMVFs to search its online network and connect directly with support organizations in their community. This advancement makes it quicker and easier to identify and secure needed resources and services, which is categorized into eight areas of support to easily navigate through each section.

“There is a need for access to comprehensive care for service members, veterans, and their families,” said Dan Brillman, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Unite US. “Our technology is helping streamline connections between demand and supply. Using our platform and software tools, IJF is leading the way in bringing these resources together in communities across Illinois.”

The IJF Call Center is managed through the expertise at The Chicago Lighthouse, which provides call-center services to organizations across the state. Staffed by seasoned military veterans, the IJF Call Center helps callers navigate the IJF online resource center, will research and find further assistance for them and provide support – even if they want to call to hear a friendly voice. The IJF Call Center number is:
1 (877) 236-7702 and hours are Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. CT.

“The IJF Call Center serves as a live extension to to ensure that we’re tackling every opportunity to support our Illinois service members, veterans and families,” said Pamela Tully, Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer, The Chicago Lighthouse. “Our staff of seasoned military veterans are IJF-trained and have first-hand experience in navigating the many benefits available to them.”

The call center is also committed to referring veterans and their families in crisis to the Illinois Warrior Assistance Program (IWAP) hosted by the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA). The IWAP offers 24/7 mental health counseling at no charge and can be reached by calling 1 (866) 554-4927 or online at for online chat.

“Boeing and its employees are deeply committed to supporting our nation’s military personnel, veterans and their families,” said Mike Cassel, Director of Boeing Global Corporate Citizenship for the Great Lakes Region. “We’re proud to support these new endeavors that will connect Illinois service members, veterans and their families to the personalized support they deserve, while raising the bar in addressing critical national issues at the state level for those that have served our country.”

Year-round IJF also works closely with many organizations, including both the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs to collaborate and support their efforts as well as continue to build its network of comprehensive support for SMVFs.

About Illinois Joining Forces

Illinois Joining Forces (IJF) is a statewide network of public and not-for-profit organizations, along with private corporations – working together to provide resources to Illinois’ military and veteran communities. Through working with partners like the Robert R. McCormick Foundation and Boeing, IJF is taking an innovative approach to assisting U.S. service members, veterans and their families navigate the wide range and sometimes-complex system of support. For more information, visit or like us on Facebook or Twitter.

About The Unite US

Unite US is a technology platform reinventing the delivery of health, employment, and human services. The company is disrupting the fragmented health and human services industry by enabling government agencies and community organizations to coordinate and deliver services through networks of providers who together can better meet the comprehensive needs of their constituents. The software suite allows the utilization of real-time data by communities to make informed decisions that impact outcomes and shape programs.

About Chicago Lighthouse

Founded in 1906, The Chicago Lighthouse is a world-renowned social service organization serving the blind, visually impaired, disabled and Veteran communities.  Through its innovative programs in vision care, rehabilitation, education, employment and technology, The Lighthouse has been changing lives for 110 years.


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