About Us

Illinois Joining Forces (IJF) was launched in 2012, through an inter-governmental agreement between the Illinois Departments of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) and Military Affairs (IDMA) as a statewide, public-private network of military and veteran serving organizations working together to improve services for Service-members, Veterans and their Families (SMVF).

No one organization can do it all. But veterans shouldn’t have to wander from office to office – or website to website – to determine who does what and which organization can best meet their needs.

Despite the wealth of resources and opportunities, some veterans lag behind the general population in key health and wellness indicators and remain vulnerable to financial, employment, relationship, and legal-related difficulties, as well as homelessness and substance abuse in their transition back to civilian life.

The government’s efforts, while necessary and valuable do not fully position veterans for success following their military service. The private sector and non profit sectors are often better positioned to address social and local factors that influence positive outcomes.

By searching the IJF website or by asking the IJF support team for help, service providers, veterans, and military families open one door and find a whole world of support.


IJF is organized around the following nine Working Groups:

Behavioral Health Financial Literacy
Benefits and Emergency Assistance Homelessness and Housing
Education Legal Support
Employment and Job Training Women Veterans
Families, Children and Survivors

The experts in each Working Group:

  • Coordinate services and identify service gaps;
  • Communicate with clients and educate them on specific services available;
  • Create efficiencies, synergy and resourcing for new programming;
  • Collaborate with other working groups when the needs are outside of the scope of services or expertise that they offer.

IJF acts as the coordinating agent to facilitate this interaction between local service providers.