VA Accepting Applications for Homeless Program Grants

Posted on June 20, 2003

VA Accepting Applications for Homeless Program Grants

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is accepting applications from public and nonprofit private groups for $8 million in grants to develop or expand programs that help veterans recover from homelessness.

“No man or woman who has worn our nation’s uniforms should suffer the indignity of homelessness,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Anthony J. Principi. “VA is committed to treating homeless veterans’ illnesses and disabilities and to providing them with transitional housing while they make their move to self-sufficiency.”

Since 1994, VA’s Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem Program has provided assistance to community and faith-based organizations, Indian tribal governments, as well as state and local governments that provide critical services to homeless veterans. Grants can provide up to 65 percent of the cost of acquiring, constructing or renovating facilities that will be used for housing, as service centers or to purchase vans for transportation. This program provided housing to more than 10,000 homeless veterans last year.

In the past nine years, VA has awarded more than 300 grants totaling $63 million to public and nonprofit groups in 45 states and the District of Columbia to provide transitional housing, service centers and vans to provide transportation to services and employment. The program has made nearly 6,000 beds available to homeless veterans. VA expects this year’s funds to make an additional 800 beds available.

The deadline for applications is July 18. To learn requirements and obtain a grant application package, applicants should contact the Grant and Per Diem Program at (toll-free) 1-877-332-0334 or download the application from VA’s Homeless Assistance Programs and Initiatives web page at: http://www.va.gov/homeless. The application package contains all required forms and certifications.

The first of three priorities for this year’s capital grant funding is for programs located in the seven states that currently have no VA-funded programs for homeless veterans: Alaska, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, North Dakota, New Hampshire and Wyoming (approximately $1.4 million). The second funding priority is for programs affiliated with Indian tribal governments (approximately $1.4 million). Third, approximately $5.2 million is available for all other state and local governments, faith-based and community-based organizations.

One-third of adult homeless men and nearly one-quarter of all homeless adults are veterans. Competition for VA’s homeless provider grants is great. Last year, 270 groups applied for the 53 per diem grants VA provided, totaling $13 million.

VA is the only federal agency with substantial hands-on assistance directly to homeless people. In addition to the grant and per diem program, VA administers specialized homeless assistance programs, establishes health care and rehabilitation programs for homeless veterans and conducts outreach to provide benefits counseling and referrals to other VA programs.

“Homeless veterans want to regain personal pride and once again become productive citizens,” said Principi. “It is our duty to do everything we can to eliminate homelessness among the men and women whose service to our nation has earned them the honored title of veteran. VA is committed to working with concerned groups to accomplish this most worthwhile goal.”


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