Homeless Veterans - Cheyenne VA Medical Center
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Cheyenne VA Medical Center

 

Homeless Veterans


In the past, most Americans could be fairly confident they would never be homeless.  In the last 20 years, the nature of employment and the economy has created a situation in which almost any American can face homelessness.  VA has greatly expanded its housing services so that if you find yourself at risk for homelessness, or “housing insecure”, we can help you address this successfully and move back to having a stable home again.

The Cheyenne VA Homeless Programs provide Veterans with outreach and housing solutions (emergency shelter, bridge housing, and permanent supportive housing), employment opportunitiesjustice-related services and more. Learn more about these programs below and at VA’s Programs for At-Risk Veterans and Their Families page.

Housing 

Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV): Outreach and Emergency Shelter Services

Program established to assist Veterans experiencing homelessness in accessing VA health care services. Outreach is the core of the HCHV program. The central goal is to reduce homelessness among Veterans by conducting outreach to those who are the most vulnerable and not currently receiving services and engaging them in treatment and rehabilitative programs. This program offers case management and referrals to emergency residential shelter services and other VA and non-VA services to help Veterans transition from living on the street or in institutions to stable housing situations.

How It Works

The HCHV Outreach team is often the first point of contact a Veteran experiencing housing insecurity or literal homelessness will have with the VA. The Cheyenne HCHV Outreach Team provides walk-in services at various locations within the Cheyenne VA catchment area. A Veteran experiencing homelessness or on the verge of homelessness can either access services at one of these locations or by calling an HCHV Outreach Case Manager. There is also a Homeless Hotline that will connect Veterans with the Homeless Program of the VA closest to them. Below are outreach/walk-in locations and contact numbers. Due to the COVID-19 national crisis, walk-in hours and availability may vary. To secure an appointment, please call an HCHV Outreach Case Manager.
In addition, the HCHV Outreach Program has a contract with two local emergency shelters in Northern Colorado: Catholic Charities The Mission in Fort Collins, CO and Guadalupe Community Center in Greeley, CO. Each of these shelters have a Veteran specific program with designated beds. The services include shelter, meals, and case management services with the goal of assisting Veterans in securing permanent housing. Please contact Tabitha Schutter for more information about this program and for eligibility requirements.

HCHV Outreach Team

  • Hunter Allen – HCHV Outreach Case Manager: 307-920-1752
  • Tabitha Schutter – HCHV Outreach Case Manager: 307-509-9813
  • Andrew Aldrich – Homeless Supervisor: 307-275-2553
  • Homeless Veteran Hotline – 877-4AID-VET (877-424-3838)

HCHV Outreach Walk-in Locations

  • Cheyenne VA main facility: Monday – Friday 8:00am to noon and 1:00pm to 4:30pm
  • Murphy Center for Hope – Fort Collins, CO
  • Catholic Charities The Mission – Fort Collins, CO
  • Guadalupe Community Center – Greeley, CO
  • Housing Navigation Center – Evans, CO

More Information

Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV)

Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Program

GPD in Cheyenne, WY

The GPD Program in Cheyenne partners with the Community Action of Laramie County (CALC) to provide short-term, 90-day placements for homeless Veterans working to find permanent housing. Veterans entering the program receive case management support from CALC and VA providers to help find housing. While securing housing is the primary focus of this program, staff will connect Veterans to other community and VA resources to build additional support towards our Veteran’s goals. CALC housing is made up of four two-bedroom apartments that include shared living spaces (kitchen, living room, & bathroom) to provide space for a total of 8-male Veterans. CALC housing includes two studio apartments for female Veterans and Veterans that identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, or Queer (LGBTQ).

Veterans can apply for GPD services and determine eligibility the following ways:

  • Call the Cheyenne VAMC main line and ask to speak to the on-call homeless worker (307-778-7550). Veterans can also come in-person to the Cheyenne VAMC homeless walk-in hours; located on the 2nd floor in the Douglas Fir Building. Veterans can check-in at the mental health desk and be connected to a provider. Walk-in hours are M-F from 8am-noon and 1pm-4:30pm.
  • Veterans and providers can directly contact Cheyenne GPD Liaison, Jenna Lenhardt, LCSW at 307-920-1172.
  • Veterans can go to a Cheyenne homeless provider and get help connecting to the GPD program. Providers include: Volunteers of America, CALC, & Comea Shelter.

More Information

Grant and Per Diem (GPD)

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH)



The Mission

The combined mission of the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is to end Veteran homelessness.

The Program

The HUD-VASH program combines housing vouchers with supportive services to assist Veterans and Veteran families that are experiencing homelessness find and keep permanent housing.

The Cheyenne VA Healthcare System (CVAHCS) HUD-VASH Program provides housing opportunities in Southern Wyoming (including the cities of Laramie and Cheyenne) and Northern Colorado (including the cities of Fort Collins, Loveland, and Greeley).

HUD-VASH provides a holistic approach to rental assistance. In addition to quality and affordable housing of the Veteran’s choosing, Veterans and their families can engage in comprehensive health care, mental health and substance use treatment, and other supportive services to promote stability, self-sufficiency,  and recovery.

Supportive services available to HUD-VASH participants at CVAHCS can include: yoga, acupuncture, Alpha Stim Therapy, medication management, nutrition counseling, psychoeducational and psychotherapeutic groups and Whole Health services.

Eligible candidates for the HUD-VASH program agree to participate in case management and utilize available supportive services to maintain housing in the community. HUD-VASH participants can expect to work collaboratively with an experienced Case Manager (CM) to develop an individualized treatment plan that reflects their goals, needs and preferences.

How It Works 

Veterans interested in the HUD-VASH Program must first be assessed for eligibility (see “More Information” below regarding eligibility screening at CVAHCS).

If a Veteran is determined eligible, the Veteran will be enrolled in HUD-VASH and assigned a CM. The CM will refer the Veteran to the local Public Housing Authority (PHA) for issuance of a housing voucher. With support from the CM, the Veteran will search for and select a housing unit. Once housed, the Veteran will remain engaged in case management and supportive services as outlined below: 

Intensive – At this stage, Veterans require the highest level of service. At a minimum, weekly home visits are required, but more frequent interactions may be needed to obtain clinical stability.

Stabilization – At this stage, Veterans are becoming skillful at managing their housing responsibilities and physical and/or mental health needs, thereby increasing their housing stability. At a minimum, twice a month home visits are required, with additional interactions as needed.

Maintenance – At this stage, Veterans are demonstrating stability, independence, and improved coping skills and recovery. Ongoing CM services are focused on treatment, support, and mentoring assistance needed after housing placement. At a minimum, once a month home visits are required, with additional interactions as needed.

Preparation for Discharge – At this stage, Veterans have at least one year of demonstrated stability and sustained a low acuity level. Case management can be provided in the home, community, or at the medical center and is focused on actively preparing the Veteran for discharge. During this phase, contacts are to occur at least quarterly and the focus of case management would address steps towards graduation from case management, and/or discharge planning.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the HUD-VASH Program a Veteran must:

  • Be eligible for VHA health care
  • Meet HUD and PHA income guidelines
  • Meet the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act definition of homelessness:
    • An individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, or an individual who has a primary nighttime residence that is a place not meant for human habitation, transitional housing for homeless persons who lived on the streets, or an emergency shelter
  • Need and participate in case management services
    • Veterans who benefit from case management services may have experienced traumatic events, have significant mental health symptoms, a history of substance use, and/or a physical disability
  • Veteran and/or household members cannot be a life-time registered sex offender

 Veterans who are the most vulnerable are high-priority candidates for the HUD-VASH program. Highest priority for HUD-VASH includes Veterans experiencing chronic homelessness.

Among the homeless Veteran population not identified as chronically homeless, the following groups are considered and offered preference:

-Veterans experiencing homelessness with children and an identified disability
-Veterans experiencing homelessness with children
-OEF-OIF Veterans experiencing homelessness
-Veterans experiencing homelessness that identify as women 
-Veterans experiencing homelessness with a disability
-All other Veterans experiencing homelessness

CVAHCS HUD-VASH Support Statements

“The HUD-VASH Program saved my life. Before HUD-VASH, I was so afraid and hopeless. I had nowhere to go. I was drinking and using just to numb myself. I was really in desperate situation. My HUD-VASH Case Manager reminded me of who I was, and helped me to start feeling better, find a place to call home and get my anxiety under control. For a year after I moved in, I was afraid to hang pictures on my wall. It didn’t feel real to be off the streets. I didn’t want to feel at home and lose it. I am proud to say that I now have pictures hanging on all my walls.” -Veteran, 44 years old

“When I came to HUD-VASH, I really just wanted the voucher. I didn’t realize that Case Management would offer me so much more. I finally addressed the ghosts that have always haunted me. And I could do so with a safe place to be through it all. This is a great program.” -Veteran, 71 years old

More Information

To connect with CVAHCS Homeless Program services, including to be screened for HUD-VASH eligibility, present to the CVAHCS Homeless Clinic (2360 E Pershing Blvd, Cheyenne, WY 82001, Douglas Fir Building), Monday-Friday from 8 AM-NOON and 1PM-4:30 PM.
If you reside in Northern Colorado and cannot present to Cheyenne, or for additional questions, call CVAHCS Homeless Outreach at 307-920-1762 or 307-509-9813.
Assistance is also available by calling the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans, 1-877-4AID-VET. 

HUD-VASH General Information

HUD-VASH Program Eligibility

HUD-VASH Program Office

Employment Assistance

Homeless Veteran Community Employment Services (HVCES)

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has made ending Veteran homelessness a top priority.

Employment is a key element in helping Veterans transition permanently out of homelessness or to avoid it altogether by increasing access to permanent housing and improving housing stability. Employment provides an improved quality of life, increased self-confidence and independence, opportunities for socialization, and a decreased reliance on institutional care. As part of efforts to end homelessness among Veterans, in fiscal year (FY) 2014, VA enhanced employment services for Veterans through implementation of Homeless Veteran Community Employment Services (HVCES).

HVCES staff are embedded in homeless programs within the VA medical centers (VAMCs), complement existing medical center-based employment services, and are a bridge to employment opportunities and resources in the local community.

HVCES provides a range of site-specific employment services rather than being a discrete program. There are no eligibility requirements for Veterans to receive assistance from HVCES other than participation in a Veterans Health Administration (VHA) homeless program. HVCES staff ensure a range of employment services are accessible to Veterans who have experienced homelessness. These Veterans may need individualized support to overcome barriers preventing them from returning to work such as: a poor work history; lack of transportation and appropriate clothing; history of justice involvement; and co-occurring substance use and/or mental health issues.

HVCES staff are tasked with:

  • Working with VA homeless program and employment services staff, including Compensated Work Therapy (CWT) and Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E), to identify employment resources available to serve homeless and at-risk Veterans, including chronically homeless Veterans.
  • Collaborating with community, state, and federal partners (outside of VA) to provide training and support services to Veterans that are not available within VA.
  • Engaging employers to develop new job opportunities for Veterans who have experienced homelessness.
  • Ensuring ongoing support services are available to homeless Veterans once they return to work and helping employers to address any issues with workplace adjustment.

How It Works

If you are interested in employment assistance services and currently receiving Homeless Program services through the Cheyenne VA, talk with your provider and ask them to submit a consult for HVCES services. You may also contact Daniel Blackman, CEC, directly at 307-214-3610 for further information.

More Information

Vocational Rehabilitation Services

The Cheyenne VA Health Care System (CVAHCS) also offers additional vocational rehabilitation services. For more information, please visit the CVAHCS Vocational Rehabilitation Services webpage or contact Steven Burczyk, Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist, at 307-256-2230.

Other Resources

Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF)

The Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program is designed to assist low-income veterans and their families in obtaining and maintaining permanent stable housing.  The VA awards grants to non-profit, community agencies to provide case management and finical assistance services. There are agencies in both WY and Northern Colorado that have been awarded this grant, and the Cheyenne VA Homeless Program works closely with these community partners.

How It Works

Veterans may contact the SSVF grantees directly (contact information below) or work with their Cheyenne VA Homeless Program provider for a referral.

Volunteers of America Northern Rockies
Supportive Services for Veteran Families - Cheyenne Office
3116 Old Faithful Road, Ste. 200
Cheyenne, WY 82001
Phone: 307-514-5518

Volunteers of America Colorado Branch
Fort Collins Office
116 W. Harvard Street, Ste. #4
Fort Collins, CO 80525
Phone: 970-999-5877

Greeley Office
4650 W. 20th Street
Greeley, CO 80634
Phone: 970-515-5449

More Information

Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF)

Homeless Veterans Dental Program

The Homeless Veteran Dental Program (HVDP) promotes oral health for all Veterans that have faced, or are at risk for, homelessness. Veterans enrolled in specific VA residential rehabilitation programs may be eligible for this service.  Veterans enrolled in the following Cheyenne VA Homeless Program may be eligible for this service: Health Care for Homeless Veterans Contract Emergency Residential Services (contract shelter beds in Northern Colorado) and Grant and Per Diem Program (GPD beds in Cheyenne). If you are in one of these programs and interested in dental services, please connect with your VA program provider for more information and to determine eligibility.

More Information

Homeless Veterans Dental Program

Below is information on the national program:


 

VA Programs Header

VA’s specialized programs for homeless Veterans serve hundreds of thousands of homeless and at-risk Veterans each year. Independently and in collaboration with federal and community partners, VA programs provide Veterans with housing solutions, employment opportunities, health care, justice- and reentry-related services and more. Learn more about these programs below and at VA’s Programs for At-Risk Veterans and Their Families page.

Housing

Picture of Woman

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH)

This collaborative program between HUD and VA combines HUD housing vouchers with VA supportive services to help Veterans who are homeless and their families find and sustain permanent housing.

How It Works

Through public housing authorities, HUD provides rental assistance vouchers for privately owned housing to Veterans who are eligible for VA health care services and are experiencing homelessness. VA case managers may connect these Veterans with support services such as health care, mental health treatment and substance use counseling to help them in their recovery process and with their ability to maintain housing in the community. Among VA homeless continuum of care programs, HUD-VASH enrolls the largest number and largest percentage of Veterans who have experienced long-term or repeated homelessness. As of Sept. 30, 2015, HUD had allocated more than 78,000 vouchers to help house Veterans across the country.

More Information

Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF)

For very low-income Veterans, SSVF provides case management and supportive services to prevent the imminent loss of a Veteran’s home or identify a new, more suitable housing situation for the individual and his or her family; or to rapidly re-house Veterans and their families who are homeless and might remain homeless without this assistance.

How It Works

Through referrals and direct outreach, nonprofit agencies and community cooperatives use SSVF funding to quickly house Veterans and their families who are homeless and keep others from slipping into homelessness by providing time-limited supportive services that promote housing stability. Case management includes help securing VA and other benefits such as educational aid and financial planning.

More Information

Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Program

State, local and tribal governments and nonprofits receive capital grants and per diem payments to develop and operate transitional housing and/or service centers for Veterans who are homeless.

How It Works

VA funds an estimated 600 agencies that provide over 14,500 beds for eligible Veterans. Grantees work closely with an assigned liaison from the local VAMC. The VA GPD liaison monitors the services the grantees offer to Veterans and provides direct assistance to them. Grantees also collaborate with community-based organizations to connect Veterans with employment, housing and additional social services to promote housing stability. The maximum stay in this housing is up to 24 months, with the goal of moving Veterans into permanent housing.

More Information

Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans (DCHV) Program

This program encompasses residential care for sheltered and unsheltered Veterans with multiple challenges, illnesses or rehabilitative care needs. DCHV provides a structured setting to foster Veterans’ independence and mutual support.

How It Works

Either on VAMC grounds or in the community, participating Veterans receive interdisciplinary clinical care that includes medical, psychiatric, vocational, educational or social services. There are more than 2,400 beds available through 47 sites.

More Information

Employment

Employment seminar

Homeless Veteran Community Employment Services (HVCES)

Under this program, each VA Medical Center (VAMC) has received funding to hire new vocational development specialists who are serving as Community Employment Coordinators (CECs) to boost employment outcomes for Veterans who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

How It Works

CECs work out of each VAMC to forge partnerships and create relationships with local community organizations and employers who have the ability to hire Veterans. CECs work with and pre-screen Veterans who offer a variety of skills and come from all education levels, and are backed by VA’s entire network of services and providers. Employers can also proactively reach out to their local CEC by visiting the CEC contact information page.

More Information

Compensated Work Therapy (CWT)

CWT is comprised of the transitional work and supported employment program, which assists homeless Veterans in returning to competitive employment.

How It Works

Veterans in CWT are paid at least the federal or state minimum wage, whichever is the higher.

More Information

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Health Care

The Philadelphia H-PACT staff

– Health Care Through H-PACTs. The Philadelphia H-PACT staff, from left to right: Keith Ferrell, George Tzanis, Lamont Jones, Kate O’Hara, Leah Jones, Donzella McLaughlin and Lynette McDaniels.

Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV)

This program offers outreach, case management and residential treatment services to help Veterans transition from living on the street or in institutions to stable housing situations.

How It Works

Operating out of many VAMCs nationwide, clinically trained providers locate Veterans who are living in precarious situations and connect them with VA bridge housing, health care and case management services that promote safe, stable living arrangements.

More Information

Homeless Patient Aligned Care Teams (H-PACTs) Program

Located on the campuses of VA medical centers (VAMCs), community-based outpatient clinics and Community Resource and Referral Centers, H-PACT clinics provide a coordinated “medical home” tailored to the needs of homeless Veterans. They integrate clinical care, social services, enhanced access and community coordination.

How They Work

H-PACTS co-locate medical staff, social workers, mental health and substance use counselors, nurses and homeless program staff. This team provides Veterans with comprehensive, individualized care, including services that lead to permanent housing. Veterans can walk in to H-PACT clinics without an appointment and receive medical care, case management services, housing placement supports, substance use and mental health treatment, community referrals, triage services, benefits counseling and even hot showers and clean clothes. H-PACT has expanded to 60 VAMCs nationally and is currently actively serving almost 19,000 Veterans. It is estimated that over 25,000 Veterans were served by an H-PACT during 2015. H-PACTs are showing promise in improving health and other outcomes among participating Veterans compared with non-H-PACT patients.

More Information

Homeless Veterans Dental Program

This other important resource provides Veterans who are homeless with dental treatment through programs such as Domiciliary Residential Rehabilitation Treatment, VA Grant and Per Diem, Compensated Work Therapy/Transitional Residence, Health Care for Homeless Veterans (contract bed) and Community Residential Care. VA is working to expand dental care to all eligible Veterans.

More Information

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Justice- and Reentry-Related Services

Incarceration Assistance

Veterans Justice Outreach (VJO) and Health Care for Reentry Veterans (HCRV) Programs

VJO aims to prevent homelessness by helping justice-involved Veterans who have mental health or substance use issues access needed VA clinical services. HCRV specialists work with Veterans to ease their transition from prison back into the community.

How the Programs Work

VJO specialists provide direct outreach, assessment and case management for Veterans in local courts and jails and help them navigate the justice system. Every VAMC has at least one VJO specialist. HCRV specialists meet with incarcerated Veterans before they’re released and assist them in planning for reintegration into the community by accessing VA and community services as well as housing and employment opportunities.

More Information

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Other Resources

Community Resource and Referral Centers (CRRCs)

CRRCs provide Veterans who are homeless and at risk of homelessness with one-stop access to community-based, multiagency services to promote permanent housing, health and mental health care, career development and access to VA and non-VA benefits.

For a list CRRCs across the country, click here.

VA Vet Centers

These community-based outlets provide a broad range of counseling, outreach and referral services to combat Veterans and their families. Vet Centers guide Veterans and their families through many of the major adjustments in lifestyle that often occur after a Veteran returns from combat. Services may include individual and group counseling in areas such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), alcohol and drug assessment and suicide prevention referrals. All services are free and strictly confidential. Call 1-877-WAR-VETS (1.877.927.8387) to learn more.

Contact

Hunter Allen
HCHV Outreach Case Manager
307-920-1752

Tabitha Schutter
HCHV Outreach Case Manager
307-509-9813

Andrew Aldrich
Homeless Supervisor
307-275-2553

877-4AID-VET

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