LUBBOCK, Texas — StarCare Specialty Health System veteran assistance program, VetStar was awarded two grants from The Texas Commission to help local veterans.

One grant of $255,000 will allow VetStar to assist veterans with their mortgage or rent along with utility bills, according to a press release.

Steven Lara of VetStar said, “rental assistance, utilities, other financial assistance like payments for their funeral costs for adult and child care costs, car notes. Those kinds of items have been eating people out of house or home right now.”

The second grant of $235,000 is to provide peer-to-peer mental health services to trauma-affected veterans, according to the press release.

Lara explains why the grants are beneficial, “Unfortunately, another gap we’ve seen locally with everything going on mental health wise. we want to connect veterans and our family with people who are in the same situation as other veterans, other caregivers who are struggling, who are having issues with reintegrating. We want to give them opportunities and hope to know that there are people out there who are on the same struggles or who want to speak with them and let them know that there’s a way out of darkness.”

Vetstar told that it serves 30 counties and 40,000 veterans.

Lara said, “we’re seeing a lot more veterans coming into our service delivery area or needing, again, financial assistance to get transition back to civilian life, understanding their educational benefits, understanding what kind of resources are for them that they earn through their service.”

VetStar said it hopes to help all local veterans with the two funds and get them back into normalcy.

Lara said, “We’re really grateful to be able to help our veterans out locally with services they need to be sustainable and supported in their communities.”