Phoenix-area billboard campaign stresses community involvement with veterans

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Clear Channel Outdoors held a press conference for the launch of "Got Ten Minutes for a Vet?" billboard campaign. (Source: Clear Channel Outdoors) Clear Channel Outdoors held a press conference for the launch of "Got Ten Minutes for a Vet?" billboard campaign. (Source: Clear Channel Outdoors)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Although Veterans Day has come and gone, Maricopa County leaders hope to keep the attention on veterans through the "Got Ten Minutes for a Vet?" billboard campaign.

Maricopa County leaders partnered with Clear Channel Outdoor Americas (CCOA) and Vets' Community Connections (VCC) to launch the campaign on Friday, in hopes that is brings more local residents into a community reintegration process for veterans and their families.

Maricopa County officials were joined by local veteran and military leaders at the unveiling ceremony hosted by CCOA.

[RELATED: Air Force jets to buzz Veterans Day events]

"We all join today in solidarity to underscore the importance of local citizen involvement in veteran and military family community reintegration efforts," said Diane Veres, Southwest regional president for CCOA. "Clear Channel is proud to partner with VCC to promote the message that Valley residents from all walks of life can use their experience and talents to answer veteran and military family questions about all aspects of life in Maricopa County."

According to a recent survey commissioned by the San Deigo Regional Chamber of Commerce, veterans and family members in transition to civilian life valued human connection and new networks into the community far more than additional internet resources.

[READ MORE: Veterans Day 2017: What you need to know]

"We're not looking for another website," said Felix Zayas, West Point graduate and Iraq veteran. "We're looking for the personal, human connections to people who know their community and whose first-hand advice and information they can trust."

VCC partnered with 2-1-1 Arizona for the past year to implement the initiative. 

Veterans, military members and spouses can call 211 to be linked with a Vet Connector, a trained call respondent who will listen and connect the caller to the appropriate community member via phone or email. Community participants agree to answer a call or an email from a veteran, military member or spouse when their expertise matches a caller's needs.

[RELATED: Arizona veteran receives mortgage-free home]

Maricopa County was one of three communities chosen for the initial launch of VCC. The two other communities are San Diego County and St. Joseph's County (South Bend, Indiana).

"We are very happy that more than almost 300 Valley residents and businesses have signed up to participate as community resource members," said Ms. Metoyer. "And the veteran and family members who have called us to date have let us know how satisfied they are to have this channel to get information from, and to be connected to, their fellow citizens."

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