From:                                         SSVF

Sent:                                           Tuesday, May 15, 2018 4:32 PM

To:                                               SSVF

Subject:                                     SSVF Program Update Friday April 20, 2018




1.            Register Now: SSVF Special Edition National Webinar - Data Quality Reporting on  April 26, 2018 at 2PM Eastern

2.            Save the Date: SSVF National Webinar on May 10, 2018 at 2PM Eastern

3.            New: HUD National Survey of All RRH Programs, including SSVF Grantees

4.            The Returning Home Initiative (RHI)

5.            Reminder: Community Planning Survey - Anticipated Release is Late April

6.            Call For Articles:  Activity Accomplishments / Success Stories

7.            New Program Update Section - SSVF Compliance Corner

8.            SSVF Participant Satisfaction Survey “Good News”


SSVF Special Edition National Webinar - Data Quality Reporting on April 26, 2018 at 2PM Eastern


Title: Data Quality Summary Reporting and Troubleshooting


Overview: The HMIS Repository is getting an upgrade and, starting in May, SSVF Grantees will have the ability to assess their own upload data quality using new email and web-based reports. Join this webinar to see a demonstration of the new reporting features, and to learn how to troubleshoot any data quality issues that you may identify.


Presented by Abt Associates:  Mary Schwartz and Mark Silverbush


Register here:


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.


SSVF National Webinar May 10, 2018 at 2PM Eastern


Title:  Cultivating Sustainable Leadership in Systems


Overview: This webinar will present leadership models and theories, as well as the importance of leaders at all levels of a continuum of care. The webinar will include a virtual panel of local and national leaders discussing the importance of having the right people in the room and empowering them to drive systems change in a community.


Registration link to follow.


HUD National Survey of All RRH Programs, including SSVF Grantees


Beginning in April, HUD is conducting a web-based survey of all rapid re-housing (RRH) programs as part of a national study to explore and document how those programs currently serve and interact with homeless households. In April, RRH programs across the country, including Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) grantees, will receive an email from HUD with a link to the web-based survey. The purpose of the study is to allow HUD, as well as researchers and practitioners around the country, to better understand how RRH and SSVF programs are being implemented nationwide.


Your input is important. To make the results as useful as possible, it is important that all SSVF programs complete and submit the survey. The survey should take approximately 30 minutes to complete. You can access the survey by clicking on the link within the email message, then enter information about your SSVF program directly into the web-based survey form. Please look for an email from HUD with a link to the web-based survey, and please respond.


What if your SSVF program didn’t receive an invitation to complete the survey? If no one in your SSVF program receives a link to the survey by April 30th, please contact Abt Associates at In the email, please include your SSVF program’s agency name, address, and the name and contact information of the person at your program who should complete the survey.


Questions? If you have other questions about the survey, or want more information, please send your question to the study team at


The Returning Home Initiative (RHI)


The Returning Home Initiative (RHI) was launched as a pilot in the beginning of FY17.  The purpose of the pilot was to move Veterans located in high cost and low vacancy areas back to their communities of origin, per their request, so long as they had a strong support network upon arrival.  Since the pilot’s inception, several Veteran households have successfully moved from the San Francisco Bay Area to lower cost communities to be with their families and friends.  Our SSVF Program Office is now releasing the attached document, “Returning Home Initiative, Description and FAQs,” so that this pilot can now be put into practice.  Given their recently released vacancy rates and high PIT count numbers, the destination communities for RHI will be Los Angeles/Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco/Oakland, Santa Clara and Seattle.  For grantees who serve these destination communities and identify Veterans for RHI, please contact SSVF Regional Coordinators Maxie Pulliam at and Katie Morrissett at


RHI Description and Frequently Asked Questions document is attached to this update and available on the SSVF Website under Enhanced Services Section at:


Community Planning Survey - Anticipated Release is Late April The Community Planning Survey will be released nationwide in the coming weeks.  The purpose of the survey is to help us to better understand community progress related to ending Veteran homelessness and the development of sustainable systems. The information gathered as a part of this survey will help the VA—along with HUD and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH)—tailor training and technical assistance so that it more effectively addresses local needs. Open and honest feedback is strongly encouraged. We are asking you to coordinate responses with CoCs, Veteran Work Groups, the local VA Medical Center homeless program leadership, and other Community Partners. Survey submissions (1 per CoC) will be due on or before Friday, June 1st.  Additional details will be forthcoming. Please stay tuned.


CALL FOR ARTICLES:  Activity Accomplishments / Success Stories


The SSVF Program Office is accepting grantee submissions describing success stories related to the provision of SSVF services in the local community.  These submissions provide grantees with the opportunity to chronicle successes and share them with the VA, partner Federal agencies, consumer providers, the general public and, of course, Veterans who may be seeking services.  Please review the attached materials for submission instructions. Materials include an overview of the process and two Releases of Information (ROIs).  Please note that it is now required that both ROIs be completed and submitted along with the success story.  These submissions will be used to help the SSVF Program Office identify potential conference presentations for our Fall Rapid Re-Housing Institute.


Submission instructions are also available at:



Success stories can be viewed at:


SSVF Compliance Corner: Example of a Compliance Finding from the Field


SSVF Compliance Corner- SSVF is governed by many rules and regulations and while as grantees you work very hard at serving Homeless Veterans, compliance can be tough.  The Compliance Corner is here to highlight weekly “real life” compliance discoveries from the “field” with the hope to help educate all grantees to help prevent future compliance findings.


Finding:  The grantee improperly charged the SSVF grant award for promotional items, such as bracelets, lanyards, water bottles, key lights, pens, pencils, grab bags, and stress balls.


Criteria:   SSVF does allow for marketing materials to be purchased to enhance staff-driven outreach, traditionally, marketing materials consist of brochures, flyers and small cost items like pens. If the grantee does purchase such items, they should be linked to a specific outreach effort and supported with event dates, attendee names, and the amount of materials that were distributed.


Section VI.B.4 of the SSVF Program Guide (page 42) - Eligible Expenses for Outreach, states that “outreach activities and costs typically are made up of direct outreach staff time. However, SSVF may pay for SSVF marketing materials to enhance conventional staff-driven outreach provided that all of the following terms are met before incurring such costs:


• Traditional staff-driven methods of outreach were tried but target numbers are still unmet.

• An assessment was performed to ensure chosen marketing method will be effective.

• A comparison was made between effectiveness of staff outreach versus marketing.

• Care was taken to market only the SSVF program itself and not the sponsoring agency.

• Marketing was designed to ensure effectiveness in connecting Veterans to SSVF.

• Participation in outreach consortium/coordination driven by COC wide process. SSVF providers must be billed for the same type of services to the COC so that it meets the definition of being equitable and reasonable.


Cause:   Grantee did not follow SSVF program guidelines on Eligible Expenses for Outreach nor was able to provide how the purchase of these items resulted in positive results for outreach and engagement.



SSVF Participant Satisfaction Survey “Good News”


Congratulations to SSVF grantees for outstanding performance regarding the registration and completion of the SSVF Participant Satisfaction Surveys!


From January 2018 thru March 2018, SSVF grantees have registered the most Veterans over a 3 month period since we transitioned to online surveys!  Keep up those amazing registration rates!  If you are having any problems with your registration link please contact MDAC at  or at 215-790-8900, extension 124.


SSVF Participant Satisfaction Survey Response Rates have typically resided in the 11% to 13% range.  Since October 2017 the response rate has never been lower than 17% and for the month of March 2018 the response rate hit an astounding 26%!  Keep up the great work providing every Veteran the opportunity to complete a survey and ensuring each Veteran understands the importance of making sure we hear from them!




Thank you,


SSVF Program Office


NOTE:  If you are receiving this email in error, please disregard.  We request your patience as the SSVF Program Office continues to address system issues with the grants management database.