VA Homeless Programs
VA Programs to End Homelessness Among Women Veterans
VA Programs to End Homelessness Among Women Veterans
Women Veterans can face many challenges when returning to civilian life, including raising children on their own, dealing with the psychological after-effects of events such as military or sexual trauma, or employment and housing barriers. Without intervention, these and other issues can put women Veterans at greater risk of homelessness.
In response, VA has built the largest integrated network of homeless assistance programs in the country.
VA also strives to address the individualized needs of women throughout its specialized programs for homeless Veterans. Every VA Medical Center and regional benefits office also has a dedicated advocate to make sure women Veterans get the health care and benefits they’ve earned through service.
- In FY 2023, more than 25,000 homeless women Veterans were served by the VHA homeless programs.
Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program (SSVF)
The SSVF Program awards grants to private nonprofit organizations and consumer cooperatives that will provide prevention and/or rapid re-housing services to very low-income Veterans and their families residing in or transitioning to permanent housing.
The SSVF Program continues to serve a high proportion of women Veterans, due in part to the greater number of households with children served with prevention assistance.
- In FY 2023, SSVF assisted more than 78,300 Veterans. Of those served, more than 11,600 or 15% were women Veterans.
- In FY 2023, SSVF helped keep families together, serving nearly 22,300 children. SSVF grants are released throughout the year, so check often to see when new funding is available.
Housing Choice Voucher
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and VA Supportive Housing Program (HUD-VASH) represents a collaborative effort between HUD and VA to provide subsidized permanent housing with VA-supported case management, targeted primarily toward long-term homeless Veterans.
With HUD-VASH, a housing subsidy is paid to the landlord directly by the local public housing authority on behalf of the participating Veteran. The Veteran then pays the difference between the actual rent charged by the landlord and the amount subsidized by the program. The case management services facilitate the attainment of the Veteran’s recovery goals. The HUD-VASH Program is for the most vulnerable Veterans, and provides special services for women Veterans, those recently returning from combat zones, and Veterans with disabilities.
- In FY 2023, HUD-VASH assisted nearly 91,200 Veterans. Of those served, nearly 11,600 or 13% were women Veterans.
Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Program
The Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Program funds community-based agencies providing transitional housing or service centers for homeless Veterans. The program provides homeless Veterans, including women Veterans and women Veterans with dependent children, with the transitional housing resources needed to facilitate treatment and stabilize them clinically and/or economically, as well as immediate housing support services. Through the program each year (as funding is available), VA offers grants that may fund up to 65 percent of the project for the construction, acquisition, or renovation of facilities, or to purchase van(s) to provide outreach and services to homeless Veterans.
- In FY 2023, GPD grantees served more than 24,700 Veterans—and of those served, 6% were women Veterans.
Women Veterans Health Care Program
Since 1988, the Women Veterans Health Care Program has provided focused care for women Veterans in a safe environment that aims to raise the standard of women’s healthcare. By focusing on primary care, reproductive health, and other health issues unique to women, VA seeks to provide treatment that helps keep our women Veterans healthy, and in a position to live rewarding lives.
VA Mental Health for Women Veterans
VA recognizes that women Veterans experience their military service in different ways than men and can deal with unique mental health conditions. Because of this, VA provides specialized services to help women work through conditions such as PTSD or Military Sexual Trauma.
Center For Women Veterans
Since 1994, the Center for Women Veterans has monitored and coordinated VA benefits, programs and services for women Veterans. The center also advocates for women Veterans and raises awareness about the responsibility to treat women Veterans with dignity and respect. Women Veterans can also call the Women Veterans hotline—1-885-VA-WOMEN (855-829-6636)—for answers to questions about VA services and resources.
Financial and Employment Support
Homeless Veterans Community Employment Services (HVCES) helps to improve employment outcomes for homeless Veterans, including women Veterans. HVCES staff ensure that a range of employment services are accessible to Veterans who have experienced homelessness, including chronically homeless Veterans. HVCES complements existing medical center-based employment services and are a bridge to employment opportunities and resources in the local community.
- In FY 2023, nearly 13,000 Veterans were employed at exit from all VHA homeless programs and services.
Veterans Justice Programs
Since criminal justice involvement and the transition from incarceration to community living are both risk factors for homelessness, VA has created two programs to serve justice-involved Veterans.
The Health Care for Re-entry Veterans Services and Resources (HCRV) Program is designed to address the needs of incarcerated Veterans when it comes to re-entering their community. The goals of HCRV are to prevent homelessness; reduce the impact of medical, psychiatric, and substance use problems on community readjustment; and decrease the likelihood of re-incarceration for those leaving prison.
- In FY 2023, the HCRV program served more than 8,400. Of those served, nearly 300 or 4% were women Veterans.
The Veterans Justice Outreach (VJO) Program works to prevent homelessness and avoid the unnecessary criminalization of mental illness and extended incarceration among Veterans. This is accomplished by ensuring that eligible justice-involved Veterans encountered by police, and in jails or courts, have timely access to VHA mental health, substance use, and homeless services when clinically indicated, and other VA services and benefits as appropriate.
- In FY 2023, the VJO program provided services to nearly 41,700 justice-involved Veterans. Of those served, more than 3,200 or 8% were women Veterans.
Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) Program
The HCHV Program engages with homeless Veterans, offering health care and other needed services. HCHV programs provide outreach, case management, and HCHV Contract Residential Services, ensuring that chronically homeless Veterans can be placed in VA or community-based programs that provide quality housing and services, and that meet the needs of these special populations.
- In FY 2023, HCHV provided outreach services to nearly 23,900 Veterans. Of those served, nearly 2,900 or 12% were women Veterans.
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Veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness can call or visit their local VA Medical Center (VAMC) and ask for a Homeless Coordinator. Use the VA locator tool www.va.gov/directory to find your nearest VAMC and call or visit today.