At the Alliance, we’ve been talking a lot about the push to end veteran homelessness by the end of 2015. And we’re not the only ones (see: the departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, the President and First Lady, and the list goes on…). Of course, telling you, “you need to end veteran homelessness this year” is much easier said than done. We recognize that. That’s why the Alliance will be providing as much guidance to communities as possible throughout the year.
Recently, several policy experts at the Alliance put their heads together to examine communities that have made real progress on ending veteran homelessness (and overall homelessness) to see how they are doing it. We’ve distilled that knowledge into this document, “Five Steps to End Veteran Homelessness,” which, as the title suggests, outlines the five major steps that communities must take to get the job done. They are:
- Identify all homeless veterans in your community and create a sharable master list
- Identify all available housing stock, including currently existing and potential stock
- Set a clear numerical goal and timeline for getting veterans housed and regularly track progress
- Identify the needed supportive services and resources for veterans
- House the veterans!
A one-page document cannot capture all that goes into housing a veteran, but it’s a start. We’ll be rolling out more information on each step in the near future. We’ll also be hosting a veteran homelessness webinar series that highlights successful communities, as well as synthesizing and curating some of our many, many online resources to make them more veterans-centric.
This particular resource should be particularly useful for communities with fewer than 100 homeless veterans. (By the way, those Continuums make up well over half of all Continuums, so there’s a lot of you out there.)
So if you haven’t already: identify all your partners and stakeholders and get the ball rolling! The Alliance is here to help you, and we look forward to seeing some awesome results in December! Stay tuned through our newsletter, website, and social media outlets for more.