Thousand Oaks, CA – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) announced that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will award over $12.6 million in grants to local partners that serve homeless veterans in Ventura, Los Angeles, and Santa Barbara Counties. The grants are awarded under the VA’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, which Brownley has championed in Congress.
“As the Ranking Member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health, ending veteran homelessness is one of my top priorities in Congress,” said Congresswoman Brownley. “I am pleased to announce these SSVF grants, which will support local organizations that provide supportive services to veterans and their families in our region.”
SSVF grantees help provide housing stability for very low-income veteran families. By offering supportive services, groups with SSVF funding help ensure that veterans who receive housing assistance successfully transition into permanent housing. These flexible federal dollars can be used to help cover moving expenses, transportation costs, educational and vocational training and counseling, and furnish homes for veterans. Grantees must follow the housing first approach, which centers on permanently housing homeless veterans quickly without any conditions. Additionally, SSVF grantees must engage in outreach to find and serve veterans in need, provide veterans with case management, and assist them in obtaining VA and other public benefits.
SSVF served 127,829 veterans in FY2014 and is on track to serve 135,000 veterans and their family members by the end of FY2015. Nationwide, the VA distributed approximately $300 million in SSVF grants for FY2016. The funding announced this week will support SSVF services in FY2016, which starts October 1, 2015, and ends September 30, 2016.
In Congress, Brownley has been a champion of federal programs that aim to reduce veteran homelessness, including SSVF grants.
The full list of SSVF grantees can be found here: https://www.va.gov/homeless/ssvf.asp.