A Home for Every Veteran
Every day, the members of our military sacrifice to keep our country strong and safe. And through their efforts, each of us is able to enjoy the privileges and freedoms to pursue our best lives. Yet, when they return home, many don’t get the same opportunity.
Today, 40,000 veterans will struggle with homelessness. Many also struggle with chronic injury, mental illness, and substance abuse. While programs exist to help veterans cope with these issues, they aren’t always coordinated and are less effective without the structure and security of a permanent home.
At Quicken Loans, we know how important a stable home is in building a successful future, which is why we’re working with Community Solutions on their Built for Zero initiative. Built for Zero is a rigorous national change effort designed to help a core group of committed US communities end chronic and veteran homelessness by focusing on a “Housing First” strategy. Through this new, collaborative approach, we can get veterans into the housing they need as quickly as possible, helping them lay a foundation to create permanent change.
The Power of a Home
A Proven Model for Ending Homelessness
It is possible to end veteran homelessness. In fact, several communities have already done it. But it must start with a commitment to housing. Connecting veterans to housing right away ensures that those experiencing homelessness have a stable place to live, and wraparound services as needed, so they can focus on addressing mental health, substance abuse, and other issues without worrying whether they’ll have a place to sleep at night.
If we can get veterans off the streets and into stable homes where they can receive whatever support and care they need, we can make lasting change. In fact, data shows that 85% of homeless individuals who are connected to housing with basic supportive services do not return to homelessness. Through the Built for Zero initiative, seven U.S. communities have already measurably and sustainably ended veteran homelessness.
But making this change won’t happen overnight. It means adjusting the way we think about homelessness. It means building bridges between public, private, and nonprofit organizations so that it’s easier to get help. And it means rebuilding the systems that are in place today with a different goal.
We must no longer ask the question of “how can I help people experiencing homelessness?” We must focus instead on building a system that will end homelessness.
Serving Those Who Served
An Ongoing Commitment to Veterans
Our commitment to ending veteran homelessness is a natural extension of our organization’s long history of supporting veteran causes. We believe that there is no greater honor than serving those who have dedicated their lives in service of our country, which is why we strive to provide veterans support in multiple areas.
As one of America’s largest VA lenders, we’re proud to have helped millions of veterans realize the dream of homeownership. Quicken Loans is also proud to have a robust hiring program for veterans and was recently honored by Military Times as one of America’s top employers for veterans. Finally, Quicken Loans has contributed nearly 30,000 hours of volunteer work for veteran non-profit organizations and raised more than $1 million for military-related charities through unique on-site activations at the Quicken Loans National PGA Golf Tournament and other major events.
National Leaders Working Together
Community Solutions is a best-in-class organization that has been recognized by the White House, the United Nations, the Smithsonian and others for its innovative and effective approaches to ending homelessness. The key to Community Solutions’ success is its commitment to developing real-time data on homelessness, optimizing local housing resources, tracking progress against monthly goals, and accelerating the spread of proven strategies.
By developing the ability to know every person experiencing homelessness by name and in real time, communities can track and respond to homelessness quickly, efficiently and comprehensively, and fix any bottlenecks in the housing process. The goal is to drive the numbers down month over month by helping more and more people access the homes they need.
Through Built for Zero, Community Solutions has created a network of 60 communities across the country that are committed to ending chronic and veteran homelessness. Over the last three years alone, participating communities have found homes for more than 90,000 people. To date, Community Solutions has helped community partners find permanent homes for more than 200,000 formerly homeless Americans.