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   Helping communities shift from short-term to long-term solutions to homelessness 
March 2012 Newsletter
In this issue:
  • Virginia communities receive national media attention
  • Where we've been around the state in February
  • VCEH welcomes new education and outreach coordinator 
  • Upcoming events in March
  • Strategic changes and updates to 1,000 Homes for 1,000 Virginians initiative
  • Good news regarding $3 million in new state funds for permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing
  • Update on Virginia Housing Trust Fund
  • Thank you to renewed and new members
  • Resources you can use
  • About Us 


Congratulations to Norfolk and Fairfax County for recent media attention on their significant accomplishments toward the goal of ending homelessness.

USA Today

highlighted Fairfax for its decreases in homelessness by 16%

The Christian Science Monitor

cited Norfolk as a leader in permanent supportive housing and a 25% drop in chronic homelessness

Richmond Times-Dispatch 

featured an Op-Ed by VCEH board member John Dearie focused on permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing in VA


VCEH gets around the state to visit with our partners, attend events, facilitate or host meetings, and more. Here's what we were up to in February of 2012!

Chesapeake: for the groundbreaking of Heron's Landing - a 60 unit SRO (Single Room Occupancy) project for people experiencing homelessness created by Virginia Supportive Housing
Harrisonburg, Fairfax, Norfolk, and Richmond: for meetings with community leaders to strategize on how to implement rapid re-housing for high barrier families
Los Angeles: for the National Alliance to End Homelessness Conference on Ending Family and Youth Homelessness
Martinsville: for a meeting with the West Piedmont Better Housing Coalition to support planning of their local 1,000 Homes for 1,000 Virginians initiative
Newport News: for a meeting with the leadership of 50 Peninsula to support planning of their local 1,000 Homes for 1,000 Virginians initiative 

 at the General Assembly advocating for funding for our permanent supportive housing/rapid re-housing budget amendment and for HB121 Virginia Housing Trust Fund

Richmond: for the meeting of the Virginia Homeless Coordinating Council overseeing implementation of the state plan to reduce homelessness 

Last month, we welcomed Lane Burgess as education and outreach coordinator.  She comes from a background in journalism and public relations in the field of education. To read more about Lane, click here. 



March 7-April 24:

 VCEH will host 12 one-day workshops across the Commonwealth on how to end child and family homelessness through rapid re-housing programs. For details and to register, click here. Workshops will cover:  

  • developing relationships with landlords; 
  •  structuring financial assistance; 
  • case management strategies; 
  • community-based services and partnerships; 
  • and outcomes for achieving high rates of housing stability.

March 8: 2012 South Hampton Roads Regional Conference on Ending Homeless, Norfolk, VA. Visit this link for more information.   


March 25 - March 28: National Low Income Housing Coalition's



1,000 Homes

Growing partnership with Veterans Administration (VA)

To help communities access resources for homeless veterans, we are fostering relationships with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the regional VA Medical Centers. We are facilitating discussions to connect the VA with agencies serving homeless veterans with the goal of securing HUD-VASH vouchers (rental assistance for homeless veterans) for those identified as medically vulnerable and/or chronically homeless. Our goal is to develop greater coordination of these groups to allow system-level changes and move people off the streets and into housing. 


National 100,000 Homes campaign makes strategic changes  Our initiative, as part of the 100,000 Homes campaign, learned of some exciting changes to the campaign. Watch this video to learn more.

Here's how these changes will affect our statewide initiative:
  • The campaign's end date will be extended by one year (from July 2013 to July 2014);
  • Campaign communities will be encouraged to count chronically homeless individuals and families toward our shared goal of 100,000, in addition to continuing to target their most vulnerable homeless individuals and families; 
  • Communitites will be asked to work toward a housing placement rate of 2.5% of their 2011 baseline of chronic and vulnerable populations each month. 
50 Peninsula
50 Peninsula is the local effort of Newport News, Hampton, Poquoson, York County, Williamsburg and James City County. 50 Peninsula will be conducting its Registry Week March 25-30, an effort to identify the most vulnerable. Approximately 100 volunteers are needed. Contact Sister David Ann Niski to volunteer. 

South Hampton Roads 1,000 Homes 
South Hampton Roads will hold its Registry Week April 16-20. Volunteers are needed to identify to most vulnerable homeless individuals. To sign up, visit this 

Homeless Assistance Funding in the State Budget

Good News!: The state budget amendment that would provide $3 million in new state funds for homeless assistance via permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing is still in play. On February 19, 2012, the Senate Finance Committee included the budget amendment in its budget report, and we continue to work with senators and delegates to include $3 million in new funds in the final budget.


Thank you to everyone who met with and contacted your legislators and responded to our action alerts during this legislative session. We have made tremendous progress in securing bipartisan co-patrons and supporters for increased homeless assistance funding. The 2012 General Assembly session is scheduled to conclude on March 10, but with the current budget impasse (see article in the Washington Post for more details) it is unclear at this time how the budget issues will be resolved and what impact it will have on the budget amendments that will increase homeless assistance funding. We continue to contact legislators in support of the budget amendment and request that you do so as well. For more information on contacting your legislators and the budget amendment, contact Robin Gahan at


Update on the Virginia Housing Trust Fund

A huge, heartfelt thank you to all of you who contacted your delegates and senators in support of legislation to create and fund a Virginia Housing Trust Fund. HB 121 (patroned by Delegate Morrissey) to create a Virginia Housing Trust Fund that includes 25 percent flexible grant funding for rental assistance and supportive services for families and individuals experiencing homelessness. HB 121 was successfully voted from the House General Laws Housing Subcommittee to the House Appropriations Committee. However, once assigned to the House Appropriations Economic Development subcommittee, HB 121 did not come up on the agenda as nearly all subcommittee meetings were cancelled due to the deadline for legislation to be heard in the General Assembly (called "crossover"). Because HB 121 was not heard before a subcommittee, it did not make it to the House floor for action before the deadline and as such is officially dead. We will be working with our local and state partners to strategize on how to reinvigorate this issue for action in the next legislative session. 

Media Coverage Urges Virginia to Use National Housing Settlement Funds for Housing

Virginia will receive a direct payment of $69 million from the national mortgage settlement that can be used at the discretion of the state. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli suggested the funds should be used for housing but no action has been taken to dedicate these funds for housing since then. The issue has received significant media attention urging the use of these funds for housing in the following venues: 


Roanoke Times

Thank you to our renewed Champion Organizations:
Shelter House
Harrisonburg Redevelopment and Housing Authority
Welcome to our newest organizational member:
Freedom First Credit Union, Roanoke

Thank you
 to our newest renewed individual and organizational members: 
Freedom House 
Dean Klein 
Linda Kaufman
Rush Homes
Sheri Link 
Volunteers of America-Chesapeake   

Have you received your annual membership renewal letter? If so, please renew! If you are unsure whether your membership is due, email



President releases FY2013 Budget

President Obama's Fiscal Year 2013 (FY 13) Budget Proposal includes a significant funding commitment to implement Opening Doors. This year's Budget Proposal includes $4.7 billion for targeted homeless assistance funding, a 17% increase over the previously enacted Fiscal Year 2012 Budget. Click here for a fact sheet on the budget.


National Low Income Housing Coalition releases new issue of  "Housing Spotlight: The Shrinking Supply of Affordable Housing"

Housing Spotlight is a series of research briefs that uses data from different sources to highlight a variety of housing issues. Click here for the latest issue.


New study finds that more than a quarter of Americans are asset poor

A study from the Corporation for Enterprise Development finds that 27% of Americans are asset poor, lacking the savings to cover expenses for three months if a layoff or other emergency leads to a loss of income. 


Family and Youth homelessness presentations available

Conference presentations from the 2012 National Conference on Family and Youth Homelessness presented by the National Alliance to End Homelessness are now available. 

The Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness is the statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing and ending homelessness in the Commonwealth of Virginia through community collaboration, capacity building, education and advocacy. 

       Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness
PO Box 14649
Richmond, Virginia 23221
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