In 2009, the White House and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced an initiative to prevent and end veteran and military families’ homelessness. One of the programs used to reach that goal, Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF), supports wrap-around services and outreach to help veterans to become stable as quickly as possible and avoid homelessness.
This week, the VA announced more than $300 million in new grants to organizations under the SSVF program, including an award to Ohio Valley Goodwill. In FY2017, Goodwill will assist 300 veteran families with housing and long term stability with its holistic wrap-around services, which include employment assistance for adult family members. The Special Projects team serves almost 900 people annually and their mission is to help individuals to attain permanent housing and employment in the Greater Cincinnati community. “We are very proud of our staff team and the outcomes we are able to help the people we serve achieve,” said Camille Robinson, Special Projects Grants Manager. For more information about the Special Projects program, call (513) 631-4500.
The Special Projects team provides the following critical services through an assortment of federal grants including:
HUD Funded Rapid Re-Housing Services, Homeless Veterans Reintegration Projects (HVRP) and Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF).
The Goodwill Special Projects team works collaboratively with the Veterans Administration and the Hamilton County Continuum of Care as well as homeless organizations in the Tri-State area to facilitate intakes for individuals in need of these services. For more specific information, please visit www.cincinnatigoodwill.org/services.
Local Goodwill organizations provide guidance and coordination of services to veterans and their families who are at risk of homelessness through housing, job training, connection to VA benefits and other wraparound supportive services. The new round of funding renewals builds upon the VA’s successful collaboration with local Goodwills and other organizations serving veterans. Collectively, the programs made possible through SSVF have led to a 50 percent decrease in veteran homelessness since 2010, with thousands of veterans securing stable housing and becoming self-sufficient.
With this new round of funding, the VA hopes to continue to duplicate or surpass the decline that was reported in 2010. To date The HUD’s annual Point-in-Time (PIT) estimate found more than 13,000 unsheltered homeless veterans living on the streets in 2016. In Hamilton County, through programs such as SSVF, the number of unsheltered homeless veterans on the streets was down to 14 at last count. Ohio Valley Goodwill has a century long tradition of helping our nation’s veterans and is committed to continuing its outreach efforts into the future.