Michael Nunez is an Army veteran, and he has struggled the last few years with homelessness, unemployment and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
But his recent experience with ARIZONA @ WORK and the Veteran Employment Toolkit was able to land him a job he enjoys and attain the benefits he needs to be successful.
Janet Waters is an Arizona Veteran Employment Advocate with the ARIZONA @ WORK office in Phoenix. She helped Nunez get back on his feet, and her goal — like every other veteran representative’s at ARIZONA @ WORK — is to provide Arizona veterans with the resources they need, whether it be somebody to talk to, or job referrals and training.
“It feels good to be able to give back to them [veterans] because they gave to their country, and deserve to have help,” Waters said.
As a Navy veteran herself, Waters has a rich military heritage and comes from a family of service members. She has always been interested in helping other veterans, as she helped her family alleviate some pain associated with service.
“Every time I give back to a veteran, it helps me to heal,” she said.
Waters met Nunez through an East Valley Veteran Education Center job event. While there, Waters introduced him to resources including the Veterans Toolkit, and he learned about job openings at Ring.
Ring is a do-it-yourself security system, that includes video doorbells. With the encouragement and guidance from ARIZONA @ WORK staff, Nunez is now happily employed in a full-time position at the company. Nunez works as a trouble shooting technician and assists people experiencing difficulty with their technology.
In the Army, Nunez worked as a Unit Supply Specialist, and he was able to utilize the skills he gained during his time in the service in his job at Ring.
“It’s amazing… The environment is very warm, the culture is very inviting, there is no pressure at all,” Nunez said.
The Veterans Toolkit enabled Nunez to get supplies he needed to begin working.
“I’m grateful for the Veterans Toolkit because I was able to utilize it to keep my car running, which landed me the job with Ring. I’m excited, and I have all sorts of options now,” he said.
The Veterans Toolkit can assist eligible veterans with transportation costs, clothes and tools for work. To qualify, veterans must:
- Live in Arizona.
- Be enrolled in a DES employment program.
- Identify the job for which supplies are needed.
In addition to getting a job at Ring, Nunez started receiving benefits from the VA to help him with emotional distress and PTSD. Waters said he is one of her “special clients,” and that he blossomed into something amazing.
“I thoroughly enjoyed working with Janet and [ARIZONA @ WORK] because they were able to keep me on track... and keep me focused,” Nunez said.
ARIZONA @ WORK provides workforce opportunities including vocational rehabilitation, employer business services, job seeker help, assistance for the Arizona veteran community, and more.
“Take advantage,” Waters said. “Because you served your country, it’s a benefit, and you deserve every bit of help that the government is going to give you to help you get back on your feet.”
For more information about ARIZONA @ WORK services for veterans, please visit the veterans services webpage or visit your local ARIZONA @ WORK One-Stop Job Center.
By Ben Flores