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VA Homeless Veterans Program and Benefits

VA Homeless Veterans Program and Benefits

Veterans often have a difficult time transitioning from military to civilian life. Although they make great sacrifices for our country, they don’t always have a place to come home to when they return from active duty. In other cases, our honorable Veterans have trouble maintaining a job for one reason or another, throwing their housing situation into a crisis.

This is unacceptable. Fortunately, the VA has several homeless Veterans programs and benefits for Veterans experiencing homelessness. If you don’t know where to start, read on. We’ll explore the most important VA homeless Veterans programs to consider.

VA Grant and Per Diem Program

Anyone dealing with Veteran homelessness should look into the VA Grant and Per Diem Program. This annual program is offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs to community agencies that provide services to local Veterans who are currently or may soon become homeless.

This program helps local communities develop supportive housing and additional services to give local Veterans residential stability. Local state and tribal governments receive per diem payouts to build and maintain transitional housing units for qualifying Veterans.

These housing solutions are meant to be temporary and short-term while homeless Veterans look for permanent housing or seek out alternative arrangements. Qualifying communities receive up to $60.06 per day per Veteran housed through the CARES Act waiver.

Any Veterans who are in supportive housing can pay rent if the rent doesn’t exceed 30% of their total adjusted monthly income. However, the Per Diem program provides ancillary services as well, such as case management grants. Case management grants are intended for Veterans who were previously homeless but now want to transition to permanent housing.

On top of that, Veterans who partake in the Per Diem Program may receive additional work placement, job training skills, and resources depending on what’s available in their local communities. Overall, this is one of the best resources homeless Veterans should look into, especially if they have nowhere else to stay for the time being.

Some communities further make use of the Enhanced-Use Lease program. This allows communities to turn any eligible buildings and/or land into supportive housing units for homeless Veterans. However, the EUL Program is only available in some cities and states. 

Check with your regional VA office to see whether your local area offers this program and its benefits.

Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Programs

For many servicemembers and Veterans, homelessness is tied to mental health problems. Therefore, the VA provides certain mental health services and residential rehabilitation programs. There is also a hotline called the Veterans Crisis Line that Veterans can call for advice when nearing homelessness.

These include Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation and Treatment Programs (MH RRTPs). These include the flagship Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans Program. This program specifically provides both residential and treatment services for qualifying Veterans who experience mental health challenges, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD.

Through the DCHV Program, Veterans can enter stable housing situations, receive VA medical center treatment and other resources to help them handle their mental health issues, and more. They can also find support seeking out long-term employment solutions so they can get back on their feet and find permanent housing over time after earning enough money or contacting family members.

The Substance Use Disorder Treatment Enhancement Initiative is a secondary program Veterans can reach out to if they are struggling with substance abuse. This initiative helps Veterans who wish to recover from substance abuse related to mental health disorders and who may be experiencing homelessness as a side effect.

Overall, the VA’s MH RRTPs are important resources all Veterans struggling with mental health may want to investigate.

Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program

Many Veterans are homeless, but they have to care for one or more dependents, such as children. The VA offers a wide-reaching, variable Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program. The Supportive Services provide grants, other financial assistance, and direct resources for eligible Veterans and family members.

Many of these Veteran services include:

  • Employment services and outreach programs, which can help Veterans find employment if they are having trouble maintaining employment
  • Case management assistance, which can help Veterans find housing and deal with ancillary mental health problems
  • VA benefits assistance programs, which can help Veterans receive the disability or other health care benefits they may be entitled to after returning from their active duty. These include HUD-VASH and the benefits offered by the GI Bill.
  • Assistance with accessing and receiving mainstream benefits, such as food stamps or Social Security benefits
  • And more

Depending on local resources in the programs one qualifies for, Veterans can also access additional grants, like temporary financial assistance to help Veterans and families pay for childcare expenses, rent, utility payments, and more. 

Check out the full list of Supportive Services available to you and your family members.

Transitional Homes for Veterans

Operation Homefront is a multifaceted, highly successful Veterans assistance program. One part of it, the Transitional Homes for Veterans program, is specifically designed to aid Veterans in reaching a stable home position.

This program can assist Veteran families if the Veteran in question:

  • Is within 12 months of discharge
  • Served honorably
  • Wants to take advantage of temporary, rent-free housing and additional support services and service providers

Veterans selected for this housing program will immediately receive a wide range of benefits and resources. Each family is assigned a designated caseworker as well as a financial counselor.

These individuals can help Veterans and their families create realistic and attainable financial and employment goals and plans.

Over time, families in this program improve their credit scores, pay off debt, accumulate savings, earn more money, and achieve stable, gainful employment. Some of the most successful Veterans can save up for homes within one to three years. 

It’s a useful program for Veterans who may be at risk of homelessness or who must care for their families.

How Veterans Can Apply for Homeless Program Assistance

As you can see, there are many different homeless Veterans programs from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development you can potentially benefit from. However, you can only access these resources if you know how to apply for them properly.

Generally, you can apply for any homeless Veterans program or other assistance by contacting your local VA office. VA regional offices should have more information about each program they support, as well as eligibility requirements and application rules.

Remember that every program has a distinct application and process you need to complete. Furthermore, some applications could take much longer to process compared to others. Since this can be complicated, it’s recommended that you contact knowledgeable Veterans law attorneys right away.

The right legal team can:

  • Identify the best benefits programs for you and your family
  • Help you fill out the paperwork or other application materials properly so you are accepted quickly
  • Make sure you are set up for success within the program(s) you choose
  • And more

Who Is Eligible for Homeless Veterans Programs and Benefits?

The majority of homeless Veterans programs are open to any Veterans who are/were:

  • No longer in active service
  • Discharged in a state other than dishonorable

However, remember that some programs are intended for Veterans who have family members. For example, the Transitional Homes for Veterans Program is intended for Veterans at risk of homelessness who have families they must support and who want to learn helpful financial habits for the future.

To determine whether you qualify for one program or another, reach out to your VA regional office and ask. You’ll need to have some paperwork in hand or be registered with the office already. But the individuals there should be able to tell you very quickly whether you qualify for a given homeless assistance program.

Contact Berry Law Today

No matter your personal situation or your location, the VA can help you find housing and get back on your feet. There’s nothing shameful about asking for help, and we urge you to call upon knowledgeable Veterans law attorneys when needed.

Law firms like Berry Law are perfect resources for you to use if you’re looking for housing assistance, VA resources, or other programs to help you get back on track. We can provide you with directions to VA centers, connect you with program directors, and offer other assistance depending on your needs. 

Contact Berry Law today, and let us help you!

Sources:

VA’s Grant and Per Diem Program | VA.gov

Veterans Health Administration » Compensated Work Therapy | VA.gov

Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Programs | Benefits.gov

All Supportive Services | VA.gov

Homeless Veterans’ Programs | Benefits.gov

Berry Law

The attorneys at Berry Law are dedicated to helping injured Veterans. With extensive experience working with VA disability claims, Berry Law can help you with your disability appeals.

This material is for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship between the Firm and the reader, and does not constitute legal advice. Legal advice must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case, and the contents of this blog are not a substitute for legal counsel.

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