By Thom Wilborn
The number of homeless veterans in our nation dropped nearly 12 percent between January 2010 and January 2011, according to the VA and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
A supplement to the departments’ 2011 Annual Homeless Assessment Report estimates there were 67,495 veterans without homes on a single night in January 2011. This estimate is significantly less than last year’s single night count of approximately 76,329. The full 2011 report will be available sometime in 2012.
“This new estimate is encouraging because it shows we are helping homeless veterans find housing and start rebuilding their lives,” said Washington Headquarters Executive Director Barry Jesinoski. “It shows DAV’s efforts to support federal programs to leave no veteran behind are making a real difference.”
Since 2009, VA and HUD, with the support of more than 4,000 community agencies, including the DAV, have helped an estimated 33,597 veterans find permanent, supportive housing and access to high-quality VA health care.
To help reach its goal to end homelessness among veterans by 2015, the VA is making $100 million in grants available to community agencies across our nation. These grants will be used to prevent an additional 42,000 veterans and their families from falling into homelessness or to provide stable housing. The funds for fiscal year 2012 are delivered through a homeless-prevention and rapid re-housing program supported by the DAV.
Last year, more than $60 million was provided to community providers, which will help nearly 22,000 people through 85 nonprofit community agencies in 40 states and the District of Columbia.
“The VA, coupled with DAV and other agencies within communities, are making headway in the drive to end homelessness among veterans,” said Jesinoski. “The latest decline is encouraging, but our nation remains short of the goal and the duty we have to veterans and their families.”
“Much remains to be accomplished,” he said. “With the continued support of Congress and the Administration, we believe the goal of getting every veteran off the streets is achievable and one we cannot relinquish to short-sited attempts to cut federal funding for veterans.”
Courtesy of DAV.com
God bless, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Sr. Vice Commander/Service Officer
DAV Ch 26 Havelock