By Julie Montanaro
Homeless veterans in the Tallahassee area may soon get help putting a roof over their heads.
The Big Bend Homeless Coalition just got a one-million dollar grant.
It will help them provide services - including utility deposits and rent assistance - to an estimated 250 homeless vets in Tallahassee and surrounding counties.
"We're going to prioritize homeless veterans because those are the folks who need to get into housing as quickly as possible for their health," Executive Director Susan Pourciau said. "For folks who are struggling, they're veterans who are living in housing, this will also provide the support they need to stay in that housing so that they don't ever become homeless."
The money from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs should be available October first.
A recent survey of the homeless in Tallahassee showed 159 homeless vets in the capital city, but the V-A estimates there are 400 living in Leon and seven of its neighboring counties.
Press Release: Big Bend Homeless Coalition
On July 13, 2013, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced the funding of Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) grants across the nation. Locally, the Big Bend Homeless Coalition was awarded a million dollars to provide services and assist with housing stability for Veterans and their families.
With the SSVF grant, the Big Bend Homeless Coalition will provide a range of services that will promote housing stability, and play a key role in connecting Veterans and their family members to VA services such as mental health care and other benefits. The agency may also offer temporary financial assistance on behalf of Veterans for rent payments, utility payments, and security deposits.
“The VA is committed to ending homelessness among the men and women who have served our country. The Homeless Coalition is proud to stand as a partner with the VA to end homelessness locally,” said Susan Pourciau, Executive Director of the Big Bend Homeless Coalition.
The program will be launched October 1, 2013 and is expected to serve over 250 local Veteran families over the course of a year.