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COVID-19 Housing Assistance Available for Veterans

Staff Reports

Veterans and their families facing eviction and homelessness can now get help from new funding from the Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri (CCSMO) has received from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

CCSOMO is disbursing these funds through its Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program which will provide housing assistance to veterans and their families facing eviction or who are already experiencing homelessness. This funding is intended to assist veterans and their families during the current COVID-19 pandemic and is available thru June 30, 2020.

This rural Missouri family was helped by Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri and the Supportive Services for Veteran Families program after their house burned down. The mother, is a U.S. Navy veteran. (Submitted to Branson Globe)

Maura Taylor, executive director for CCSOMO, said the SSVF has been ongoing for five years in 36 counties in southen Missouri.. The SSVF program helps veteran families with current housing situations including utility payments, rapid housing at hotels or motels, and permanent housing by working with local landlords.

CCSOMO works with the Veterans Affairs to accept referrals for the program, but anyone interested in finding out more information may contact CCSOMO’s office in Springfield at 417.268.9998, or in Joplin at 417.624.2790.

Taylor said this pool of money will be significant for many area veteran families. “We typically serve 125 homeless, or those at risk of homelessness, veterans a year,” Taylor said. “This new money we have will allow us to really make some huge impacts. It’s a sizable amount of funding but we need people to reach out to us during this time. We have great case managers with heart who are dedicated to just this program,” Taylor said.

The CARES Act funding is coming through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for CCSOMO’s SSVF program.

Taylor also said, “Homeless people are typically medically fragile, and likely don’t have access to medical care. That makes COVID-19 a particular concern. We also know many veterans will lose their jobs” in coming months, Taylor said. “This funding will also allow us to keep people housed so they aren’t becoming homeless.”

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