The Sioux Falls Vet Center welcomes and encourages the general public to attend an open house event from 3:00 - 6:00 PM on Tuesday (March 15, 2016).

The Vet Center in Sioux Falls is a stand-alone facility associated with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. The Vet Center program was started in 1979 as a letter of congress after the Vietnam War when many veterans were having problems readjusting.

The Vet Center differs from the medical center in such that it is a walk-in facility, there is no charge for eligible veterans, and they have the ability to reach out to active members while holding a level of confidentiality.

Chuck Albrect handles media relations at the Sioux Falls Vet Center, and he says that the biggest difference at the Vet Center is that almost half of the staff is made up of veterans.

“Veterans feel very comfortable talking to Veterans,” said Albrect.

The Vet Center offers a wide array of services, including individual or group counseling, marital or family counseling, medical referrals, employment guidance and sexual trauma council.

Albrect says that nearly 20 percent of men and women in uniform experience Military Sexual Trauma. The Sioux Falls Vet Center has certified counselors to deal with MST.

If you are not a veteran you are encouraged to attend the open house. Albrect says that unfortunately, the Vet Center program is one of the best-kept secrets in the country. The open house is an opportunity for people the Sioux Falls and surrounding areas to learn about the Vet Center program and help veterans.

“Wars may be unpopular, but it’s America’s best men and women that are sent out there to die and fight for our country,” said Albrect.

The Sioux Falls Vet Center is located at 3200 W 49th Street, directly west of the Callie Branch Library. Parking is limited at the facility so accommodations can be found in the library parking lot during the Open House on March 15.

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