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help for homeless veterans

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VA Homeless Programs


Community Resource and Referral Centers (CRRCs)


Community Resource and Referral Centers (CRRCs)

Community Resource and Referral CenterCommunity Resource and Referral Centers (CRRCs) are places where Veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness can connect to stable housing and supportive services. CRRCs are collaborative, multi-agency, programs that provide access to housing, health care, and a wide variety of services that homeless Veterans need. These community-based store front operations are located in areas of the city accessible to homeless Veterans. The services at these Centers are provided by both VA and community partner staff. Through the National Center on Homelessness among Veterans (the Center), this "one-stop shopping" homeless service model was tested in 29, strategically located sites across the country starting in 2012 and are currently located at 31 locations across the country.

CRRC Fact Sheet


CRRC Locations


CRRC Overview


CRRC Technical Assistance Planning Presentation


Tsemberis S, Moran L, Shinn B, Shern D, Asmussen S. Consumer preference programs for individuals who are homeless and have psychiatric disabilities: a drop-in center and a supported housing program. Am J Community Psychol. 2003; 32(3/4): 305-317.

Patricia O'Campo, Maritt Kirst, Nicole Schaefer-McDaniel, Michelle Firestone, Allison Scott, and Kelly McShane. Community-Based Services for Homeless Adults Experiencing Concurrent Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders: A Realist Approach to Synthesizing Evidence. Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine, Vol. 86, No. 6 doi:10.1007/s11524-009-9392-1.

O'Toole TP, Gibbon JL, Hanusa BH, Fine MJ. Preferences for sites of care among urban homeless and housed poor adults. J Gen Intern Med. 1999; 14(10): 599-605.

Veteran's using the 31 CRRC's in metropolitan sites across the nation have access to a community-based store front program offering a wide variety of services from VA staff, local community homeless providers, other Federal agencies, State agencies, faith based, and Veteran's service organizations. These innovatively designed sites are a vital part of VA's outreach services to homeless Veterans. Each CRRC provides a welcoming atmosphere where homeless Veterans can find refuge from the street and get the services they need in one location. Women veterans and Veterans with accompanying children can access services specially designed for them.

Each CRRC is designed to provide the unique services that are needed by homeless Veterans in their respective community. Some of the services that veterans can expect to find at many CRRCs are as follows:

  • Showers, access to toiletries, and grooming supplies
  • Clothing services
  • Lockers and a place where personal belongings can be secured
  • Food pantry services by voucher or on site, meal vouchers, and emergency food supplies
  • Computer lounges where Veterans can have access to the internet, setup an e-mail account, communicate with friends, and research resources for services. Some sites have training on basic computer literacy.
  • Ability to establish a fixed address for getting mail.
  • Access to telephones
  • Economic Service Assistance; Filing claims and assistance with VA pensions and compensation, Social Security and SSI, food stamps, and state and county general assistance programs
  • Employment and vocational services
  • Assistance with legal problems
  • Counseling with money management issues, debt restructuring, back child support payments, and applications for fiduciary services
  • Assistance with securing shelter
  • Assistance with securing transitional housing and permanent housing
  • Transportation services
  • Medical care, flu shots, and enrollment in primary care medical services
  • Access to mental health, substance use, and recovery support services

CRRCs are designed to provide the following basic services at all sites:

  • Secure store front community accessible space or partner with an existing community partners for space and services.
  • Provide space free of charge to collaborating community partners thru a sharing agreement or memorandum of understanding.
  • Availability seven days per week.
  • Provide outreach services
  • Provide case management services
  • Provide showers and laundry facilities on site or thru sharing agreements.
  • Provide access to food and clothing services via non-profit community providers.
  • Provide rapid referral to housing services (emergency and permanent).
  • Provide medical and mental health services either on site or by referral.
  • Provide comprehensive services to prevent and/or end homelessness directly or by referral.

No available resources

Community Resource and Referral Centers: An Implementation Framework (A step by step guide for the Community Resource and Referral model using an Implementation Science Framework)

Steps to Creating a CRRC Lease: A guide to the leasing process

CRRC Fidelity Instrument: A fidelity check list for operational CRRCs

CRRC Critical Development Activities: A step guide for establishing a CRRC

CRRC Services and Partner Planning Guide



For more information on how this model was developed contact Roger Casey PhD  or Paul Smits

For information on existing CRRCs contact Eileen Devine at

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