Philadelphia To Curb Veteran Homelessness
Philadelphia to work its way down to curb veteran homelessness and provide housing stability to veterans.
Two generations of military veterans gathered in the community room at Veterans Village in Philadelphia’s Frankford neighborhood, bonding over shared experiences and offering support to each other.
Leon Brantley and Vanessa Morbeck served in the military and experienced housing instability.
Brantley said, “Our quality of life has become a part of the reality. We’re having as they would say in the military, ‘an attitude check, a reality check. Am I correct? You know?”
Both the veterans not only share the military background but also the feeling of being housing insecure. Both felt that the services offered by Veteran Affairs were doing little to support their needs after they left their respective posts.
Some of the factors that led them to this were lack of guidance, inability to find timely medical and psychological support, and a sense of being overwhelmed.
According to the data released by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, around 33,200 veterans are experiencing homelessness at present. The unhoused veterans came out to be more than double.
Since 2020, the rate of unhoused veterans has gone down by 11% but the needs of veterans experiencing homelessness remain unmet.
Morbeck said, “It took about like four or five years now to finally get housing and then be here in the Veterans Village. It’s just a long process.”
Veterans Village is expecting to step in and set an example for other buildings across the city and nation. Veterans Village is being regarded as a template for an independent living model providing not only a safe place to live but also a community for fellow veterans.
There are two to three-bedroom family units to support veterans with young children and families.
Veterans Village in Philadelphia’s Frankford neighborhood offers longer-term housing solutions for ex-military personnel without government funding. It is open to veterans with honorable discharges, and the application process is similar to renting an apartment, with no income restrictions.
The required field includes personal information along with the special housing needs. The village will determine the eligibility and perform a screening check.
Besides this, it was revealed that nearly 90% of residents were on Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers which provide rental assistance and case management support to veterans.
The unhoused or unsheltered veterans at present need to go through such programs to support people with behavioral health or substance abuse issues before they can apply.
Spain said, “Do I have sheets? Do I have towels? Do I have a coffee maker? How can anybody have a house without coffee? We have to look at the full picture of needs and resources for each veteran and meet them where they are.”
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Camacho Diaz Vicky. “Philly’s Veterans Village seeks to curb veteran homelessness by being a template”. WITF, November 22, 2023,
Last Updated: September 20, 2021