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VA Augusta exceeds goal to permanently house Veterans

Stand Down event graphic

It’s not just a pat on the back, it’s one step closer to a Veteran foot in the door to permanent housing.

The Department of Veterans Affairs recently published a press release stating new data, showing an 11% decline in Veteran homelessness since 2020. Locally, VA Augusta Health Care System recently reported a dramatic decrease in Veteran homelessness in the Central Savannah River Area through its Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) Program.

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate you, your teams, and your community partners for being on pace to achieve the Permanent Housing Placement (PHP) National Challenge to House 38,000 Homeless Veterans,” Veterans Health Administration Homeless Programs Office Executive Director Monica Diaz wrote in an email to the VA Augusta HCHV team, which had achieved a 140 percent increase in the PHP target as of September 2022, far surpassing its goal.

For one week each year, VA Augusta staff and community partners conduct a Point-in-Time, or PIT count, during which they count local sheltered and unsheltered people experiencing homelessness. In 2021, they counted more than 40 Veterans in the Augusta area. In 2022, the PIT count had dropped to 23.

“Our team has worked tirelessly to link our Veterans to affordable housing options, even more so during the pandemic and housing crisis," said Sabrina Faircloth, a supervisory social worker for VA Augusta’s HCHV Program.  "I am honored to work with such a dedicated team who continue to identify solutions for our Veterans. While we celebrate a decrease in Veterans experiencing homelessness, our work continues until all of our Veterans have a safe and affordable place to live.”

VA Augusta will host a Homeless Veteran Stand Down event on Friday, Nov. 18, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at its Uptown Division, at 1 Freedom Way in Augusta, with the goal of providing as many at-risk Veterans or Veterans experiencing homelessness with resources. Veterans can drive through or walk up to the pavilion located near the baseball field behind the hospital. 

Veterans can expect a VA eligibility screening and registration, information on VA health care programs and services, local community agency information, HUD-VASH and other housing information, limited life-essential items, and a boxed lunch. Masks are required and will be provided.

If you or someone you know is at risk or experiencing homelessness, there are multiple ways to seek resources. Veterans may walk in to office 3D-104 at VA Augusta’s Uptown Division, call 706-733-0188 ext. 26814, or call the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans any time at 1-877-424-3838.

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