July 28, 2011 (Chris Moore)

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has launched a new program to provide financial assistance and support services to help bring an end to Veteran homelessness and to promote housing stability for at-risk Veteran families to prevent them from becoming homeless.

As part of the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, the initial $60 million grant will serve 22,000 Veterans and Veteran families at 85 non-profit community agencies in 40 states and the District of Columbia.

Agencies will have the ability on behalf of Veterans to provide financial assistance for such purposes as housing/rent payments, utility payments, security deposits and moving costs. Support services are also provided and include outreach, case management, assistance in obtaining VA benefits, and assistance in obtaining and coordinating other public benefits.

“This new homeless prevention program will provide additional comprehensive support to Veterans who have served honorably, and now find themselves in a downward spiral toward despair and homelessness,” said VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki. “This program expands our capacity to act before a Veteran becomes homeless and to target the problem of family homelessness. These grants would not have been possible without the extraordinary partnerships forged with community organizers who are firmly committed to making a positive difference in lives of Veterans and their families.”

The SSVF Program, a critical element of VA’s plan to prevent and end homelessness among Veterans, was developed to promote housing stability among homeless and at-risk Veterans and their families. The VA awards grants to private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives that can provide a range of supportive services to eligible very low-income Veteran families.

Veterans who would like more information about SSVF, or who would like to get a list of award recipients and additional details, can visit http://www.va.gov/homeless or http://www1.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.

Tags: veterans, homeless, at-risk, SSVF, grants, homeless prevention, financial assistance, housing assistance