Since January, the Coalition for the Homeless–under the leadership of Mayor Greg Fischer with over a dozen nonprofit and governmental partners–has worked to coordinate an end to veteran homelessness locally. This initiative is known as Rx: Housing Veterans.
We are thrilled to share that Louisville has officially reached functional zero for homeless veterans. The US Interagency Council on Homelessness informed Mayor Fischer of this great news on Veterans Day.
Reaching functional zero is a huge accomplishment. It means that, first, all identified homeless veterans have access to permanent housing, and second, that we have implemented a system with dedicated resources to ensure newly homeless veterans find housing within 30 days. To date, over 600 veterans have been placed in permanent or transitional housing, and over 180 have a housing plan.
What’s next? Our partners will continue to prioritize resources for the 30 veterans who become homeless in Louisville each month. And over the next few years, we will apply this successful model for ending homelessness to other homeless populations, including the chronically homeless in 2016, and youth and families in 2017.
But today, we are thankful.
We are thankful for the tireless work of our governmental leaders, nonprofit partners, donors, and volunteers, who have come together in an unprecedented way to solve a community problem.
And above all else, we are thankful that Louisville can honor the service of our veterans by promising that each will have a place to call home by the holidays.
About Rx: Housing Veterans
Mayor Fischer was one of the first mayors in the country to join the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness, and the Coalition for the Homeless and partners joined the national Zero: 2016 campaign to do so shortly thereafter. Rx: Housing Veterans was launched in January 2015. Partners include the Office of the Mayor; the Coalition for the Homeless; Louisville Metro Housing Authority; Louisville Metro Community Services; Robley Rex VA Medical Center; Volunteers of America; Family Health Centers; HUD’s Louisville Field Office; the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs; St. Vincent de Paul; Seven Counties Services; Interlink Counseling Services; Veterans for Peace; Restoration Center; St. John Center for Homeless Men; Wellspring; Legal Aid Society; Brain Injury Alliance of Kentucky; and Veterans Community Alliance of Louisville.
To see the full plan to end veteran homelessness and the resources committed by agencies in December 2014, click here.