Office of Patient Care Services –
Office of Mental Health Services
Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program
Overview: VA was recently authorized to develop the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program, which will provide supportive services to very low-income Veteran families in or transitioning to permanent housing. Funds will be granted to private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives who will assist very low-income Veteran families by providing a range of supportive services designed to promote housing stability.
Background: Estimates for Veteran homelessness have dropped substantially in the past five years to 131,000 in 2008. However, despite the success of VA Homeless Services and its community partners, to end Veteran homelessness, VA must continue to assist families transitioning from homelessness to permanent housing and prevent at-risk families from becoming homeless. In 2005, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) reported that 1 in 10 poor adults and children experience homelessness each year. In 2007, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimated 2.3 million Veteran renter households had low incomes in 2005 (less than 80% of area median income) and 1.3 million of these households had very low incomes (less than 50% of area median income), placing them at high risk for housing instability.
Supportive Services: Through the SSVF Program, VA aims to improve very low-income Veteran families’ housing stability. Grantees (private non-profit organizations and consumer cooperatives) will provide eligible Veteran families with outreach, case management, and assistance in obtaining VA and other benefits, which may include:
§1 Health care services
§2 Daily living services
§3 Personal financial planning services
§4 Transportation services §5 Fiduciary and payee services
§6 Legal services
§7 Child care services
§8 Housing counseling services
In addition, grantees may also provide time-limited payments to third parties (e.g., landlords, utility companies, moving companies, and licensed child care providers) if these payments help Veterans’ families stay in or acquire permanent housing on a sustainable basis.
Application Process: Once funds are available, VA will publish a Notice of Fund Availability (NOFA) in the Federal Register. Application information will also be available online: http://www1.va.gov/homeless and http://grants.gov.
Additional Information: For further information about the SSVF Program, please email John Kuhn, LCSW, MPH, firstname.lastname@example.org.