By addressing the housing needs of veterans and their families, cities are pioneering ways to meet similar needs of other special populations.
To help local leaders start or support existing work to end veteran homelessness, NLC held a webinar featuring officials from San Francisco and Salt Lake City. During the webinar, city officials discuss their progress and NLC offers Three Steps & Five Questions that can help cities end veteran homelessness.
Below are examples of specific actions cities can take to support efforts to end veteran homelessness.
Issue Updates at CitiesSpeak.org (NLC's official blog) »
The U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness has published criteria for ending veteran homelessness as part of the Mayors Challenge.
NLC is proud to join with federal agencies and national partners to bring proven solutions for ending veteran homelessness into cities.
Philanthropic supporters such as The Home Depot Foundation are key allies in local efforts. Since 2011, The Home Depot Foundation has invested more than $83 million in communities. Their commitment has preserved or built more than 15,000 units of housing for veterans and their families. In addition, Team Depots from the company's more than 2,200 retail stores provide communities with volunteer support and product donations.
In addition to supporting the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development offers practial advice for enacting change.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs provides information on their efforts and resources dedicated to ending veteran homelessness. To find a list of organizations that administer resources from the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, click here.
The U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness coordinates the federal response to homelessness. Their regional coordinators and Solutions Database are key resources for cities committed to ending veteran homelessness by 2015.
Community Solutions is a recognized leader for developing and implementing data-driven strategies to end homelessness. Over 235 U.S. communities engaged in the 100,000 Homes Campaign, implementing proven methods to end homelessness, and collectively providing a permanent home for 105,580 of the most vulnerable homeless, including 31,171 homeless veterans. To bring an end to chronic and veteran homelessness, Community Solutions has launched the Zero: 2016 campaign.
The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a recognized leader providing data, policy recommendations and examples of local solutions for ending veteran homelessness. Click here to see their Five High Impact Steps.
The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans is a long-time leader serving our veterans who are most in need. Their programs, knowledge and policy insights can bring years of experience into your city's efforts.
The American Legion is the nation's largest veteran service organization. With more than 13,800 posts in all 50 states, the Legion is a well recognized resource and advocate for veterans and their families. The American Legion has stepped up its help both nationally and locally with a Homeless Veterans Task Force.
Efforts to support veterans should not end at housing. To jumpstart your understanding of local level veteran services, NLC offers overviews of the full range of resources available to communities from national organizations.
For more insight into local level resources, you may start by reaching out to your county veterans service officer to learn the "who's who" of veteran services in your area. The National Association of County Veterans Service Officers can help you identify your local contact. Your community may also consider developing a customizable Network of Care database, which provides a highly organized and searchable directory of local resources available to veterans and other special populations (the website is developed in partnership with counties for a fee).