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Mentoring Program for Women Veterans Launched in California

CPR photo/Ben Adler

Oakland resident Patricia Brooks, a U.S. Navy veteran who's used the Joining Forces Mentoring Plus program at the national level, speaks at a Sacramento news conference on Veterans Day announcing the program's California launch.

CPR photo/Ben Adler

Oakland Navy vet Patricia Brooks lost her paralegal job last year – a victim of the recession.  Then, the Joining Forces Mentoring Plus program connected her with the business analytics software giant SAP:

“They’ve paid for my training to go to their high-tech courses.  It’s a little bit over my head, but they’re helping me navigate that,” Brooks says.

The program began early last year with backing from First Lady Michelle Obama and Second Lady Jill Biden.  Now, the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls is launching it here – and Brooks is thrilled:

“Maybe there’s wardrobe assistance.  Maybe there’s outreach assistance.  There’s daycare.  There’s job care.  This is a portal that invites you to go anywhere you need to go.  The services and the help are there,” she says. 

No state tax dollars go toward the program; it’s paid for with private fundraising.

The program can be found at: http://joiningforcesmentoringplus.org/california

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Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio