Tonight, while most of us are safe and comfortable in our homes, roughly 12,000 California veterans will be sleeping in parks, under bridges, or in their cars. That scenario will soon change, thanks to California voter approval of Proposition 41 and the resulting Veterans Housing and Homelessness Prevention (VHHP) program. Three state agencies, HCD, the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet), and the California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA) joined together to develop this critical affordable housing initiative for veterans.
On June 30, the VHHP program awarded its first round of funding for 17 housing developments, setting the stage for stability for California’s low income and homeless veteran population. Together, these developments will provide safe, stable, and affordable housing for approximately 600 veterans and their families.
Because many veterans suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or other disability, a large portion of the housing will include supportive services that are voluntary, flexible, and responsive to individual needs, such as case management, drug and/or alcohol counseling, health clinics, benefits advocacy, and family and childcare services.
The second round of VHHP awards is expected to be available this fall, giving additional housing developers an opportunity to apply for and receive funds for the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, and preservation of affordable multifamily housing for vets
The millions of men and women who were brave enough to serve our country should not have to fight another battle once they return home. The VHHP program will help California veterans regain a sense of place, a sense of pride, and most importantly, peace.