Homeless Veteran Housing Initiative Receives Approval

Ramos LogoBy Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)-The Board has approved the allocation of $248,300 of Discretionary General Funding to reinforce existing resources for homeless veterans.

On July 21, 2015, the Board conducted a study session focused on the County’s system for homeless services and the tragedy of homelessness among the County’s military veterans. The Board directed staff to work with community partners and other agencies in a coordinated effort to house all of the County’s veterans by December 31, 2015.

Since that time, willing and interested partners, including LightHouse Social Service Centers, Loma Linda University, Goodwill, United Way, California Apartment Association, Faith Advisory Council, Inland Valley Hope Partners, and National CORE, along with representatives from the San Bernardino County Sheriff, CDH, HACSB, Behavioral Health, Veterans Affairs, Workforce Investment Board and the County Office of Homeless Services have been working diligently to leverage sources, align services and eliminate impediments to achieving this goal.

“We have been successful in housing 224 of our 401 homeless veterans,” stated Frank Guevara, Director of Veterans Affairs. “All of our partners have been a crucial part of this accomplishment. I thank them for their continued support and commitment to our homeless veterans.”

Through this process, the lack of temporary (“bridge”) housing has been identified as a significant impediment to housing our homeless veterans.  Access to additional bridge housing resources, along with essential moving costs, will be critical to house the remaining 177 homeless veterans by the end of the year.

Chairman Ramos commented, “Homelessness is an issue that is very real. We see it every day in our community. In July we set the goal of housing 100% of our identified homeless veterans by the end of this year, the approval of the additional funds will help us get closer to our goal of completely eradicating homelessness in our County.”

More information on this item can be found in the Oct. 20th agenda at http://cob-sire.sbcounty/gov/sirepub/.

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