Thousands more low-income Veteran families will now receive assistance under the Supportive Services for Veteran Families.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) awarded approximately $300 million more in grants under the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program Thursday to help very low-income Veteran families around the nation who are permanently housed or transitioning to permanent housing. The SSVF grant program provides access to crucial services to prevent homelessness for Veterans and their families.
SSVF funding, supports outreach, case management and other flexible assistance to prevent Veteran homelessness or rapidly re-house Veterans who become homeless. Grants are awarded to 275 non-profit organizations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Locally, there are 10 organizations that serve more than 45 counties received grants totaling more than $9 million. A list of SSVF grantees is located at www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.
“SSVF is a key tool to promote housing stability among our most economically vulnerable Veterans and their families,” said James McLain, Acting Medical Center Director, Jesse Brown VA Medical Center. “This program empowers our community-based partners to provide the mix of services needed to prevent Veterans from becoming homeless and rapidly re-house those who become homeless.”
Grantees will continue to provide eligible Veteran families with outreach, case management, and assistance obtaining VA and other benefits, which may include health care, income support services, financial planning, child care, legal services, transportation, housing counseling, and other services. They are required to establish relationships with local community resources.
SSVF served more than 157,000 participants during its last fiscal year and is on track to exceed that number this year. As a result of these and other efforts, Veteran homelessness is down 47 percent since the launch of the Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness in 2010. Also since 2010, more than 360,000 Veterans and their family members have been permanently housed, rapidly re-housed, or prevented from falling into homelessness by VA’s homelessness programs and targeted housing vouchers provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The new funding will support SSVF services during the next fiscal year, which starts October 1, 2016, and ends September 30, 2017.
For more information about the SSVF program, visit www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp or contact the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center Office of Public Affairs at (312) 569-6402.