CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — A financial resource for West Virginia veterans needing financial help during the COVID-19 pandemic is getting some federal assistance.
The West Virginia Community Action Partnership (WVCAP) received $1,118,403 from the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs towards veterans’ housing services within the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program. WVCAP Executive Director Mary Chipps said the money will be allocated towards housing over the next three months.
“When so many people are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, this funding helps us address the needs of homeless veterans and those in shelters, helping them get into permanent housing,” Chipps said. “This program normally operates on about $2 million a year, so this grant increases the funding by more than 50 percent this year.”
SSVF aims to provide stable housing to low-income veterans with outreach, case management, and help obtaining Veterans’ Affairs or other public benefits available in the area. WVCAP SSVF program manager, Leah Willis, said the benefits include health care services, daily living services, personal financial planning services, transportation services, income support services, fiduciary and representative payee services, legal services, child care, and housing counseling services.
“With this additional funding, no West Virginia veteran who is willing to accept assistance should be on the streets or in a shelter,” Willis said. “The program also helps veterans in danger of becoming homeless. It’s just a matter of getting information out there about services that are available.”
If those payments help veterans’ families stay in or acquire permanent housing on a sustainable basis, SSVF may also provide time-limited payments to third parties, which includes landlords, utility companies, moving companies, and licensed childcare providers.
In addition, services to prevent low-income veterans from becoming homeless can be provided for more months. A veteran only needs a letter from a landlord stating the veteran is behind in rent and about to be evicted.