SSVF Program Update Friday September 20th, 2019

From: Supportive Services for Veteran Families
Date: September 20, 2019 at 4:20:41 PM EDT
Subject: SSVF Program Update Friday September 20th, 2019


1.    Important Update: Federal Partners Housing Conferences
2.    Reminder: September is Suicide Prevention Month
3.    Important: SSVF Rapid Resolution Resources
4.    New: SOAR Toolkit
5.    Announcement: SSVF Deputy Director – Jill Albanese

Important Update:  Federal Partners Housing Conference

The SSVF Program Office, with the support of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the US Interagency Council on Homelessness and other federal and national partners, is pleased to announce confirmed locations for the upcoming 2019 Federal Permanent Housing Conferences.  Registration is now open for the East Coast Permanent Housing conference; registration is expected to open for Dallas and Hollywood in the next week.  The events are targeted to SSVF Grantees, HUD-VASH representatives, and CoC Partners.
Please note location changes for the East and West coast conferences:

•    East Coast (Ft Lauderdale, FL): October 22-23, 2019
•    Mid-Region (Dallas, TX): November 5-6, 2019
•    West Coast (Hollywood, CA): November 19-20, 2019

Information regarding hotel and conference registration will be provided in the next week. Questions related to these events can be sent to the SSVF program's technical assistance address at

Reminder: September is Suicide Prevention Month

Please join the SSVF Program Office in educating your staff and sharing tools and resources to support the #BeThere campaign to help prevent Veteran Suicide.

As a reminder, All SSVF grantee staff must be trained annually in SAVE, a suicide prevention training from VA. Staff should first attempt to request in-person training from their locally certified SAVE trainer, either a VAMC Suicide Prevention Coordinator or Homeless Program Staff Point of Contact (POC). For assistance in locating your local Suicide Prevention Coordinator, click here If in-person training is unavailable, all staff should view the SAVE training webinar on Suicide Prevention found at this link, also located on the VA Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention website, or view the SSVF webinar on Suicide Prevention located here

Starting in our new grant year for 2020, we will be encouraging grantees to share VA suicide prevention resources with your community partners by discussing with them the availability of in-person and web-based SAVE training along with other VA resources on Suicide Prevention. Grantees are encouraged to share resources when meeting with community members at CoC, CES, and other community partner meetings and trainings and to document these efforts.

Here are a few additional ways you and your staff can support the #BeThere campaign:

•    Add #BeThere to your email signature. Add the #BeThere logo and the URL to your email signature to highlight these resources and spread awareness.
•    Ask your staff to familiarize themselves with the warning signs of suicide at
•    Share VA's Social Media Safety Toolkit and encourage others to learn how to recognize and respond to social media posts that may indicate emotional distress, feelings of crisis, or thoughts of suicide.
•    Remind employees in your program about how to discuss Veteran suicide, and point them to VA's Safe Messaging Fact Sheet as a guide.
•    Share with employees and community members the link to VA's Mental Health resource page at

Important:  Rapid Resolution Resources

The Rapid Resolution Resources have moved to a new location on the SSVF website.  All Rapid Resolution resources can be found on the "Official Guidance to the SSVF Program" tab under the Supportive Services Section.

New: SOAR Toolkit

Connecting Veterans and their families with Social Security Administration (SSA) disability benefits is a critical step to increasing income and housing stability, particularly for those Veterans whose work activity is limited by disabling conditions or who have a child with disabling conditions. SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) directly contributes to the Supportive Services for Veteran Families' (SSVF's) goal of promoting housing stability among very low-income Veteran families by increasing access to critical income supports.

SSVF Grantees are encouraged to utilize the resources in the new SOAR toolkit to expand use of the SOAR model so that any Veteran with disabling conditions who is experiencing or at risk for homelessness is able to quickly connect with a SOAR provider for SSI/SSDI application assistance.  The SOAR toolkit is available on the SSVF website and can be found at the link below:

Announcement:  SSVF Deputy Director – Jill Albanese

Jill Albanese has been selected as the new Deputy Director for SSVF.  As the Deputy Director, Jill will be responsible for the daily operations of SSVF.   Jill Albanese has dedicated her career to assisting the homeless through her work at nonprofit community organizations and the Department of Veterans Affairs.  Jill joined the VA in 2008, where she worked as the Homeless Program Supervisor at the Boise, Idaho VA Medical Center.  In 2011, Jill joined the Supportive Services for Veteran Families program, where she has supervised the Regional Coordinator team.  Previously Jill has worked as a social worker providing direct practice to families and individuals experiencing homelessness.  Jill is currently stationed at the San Francisco VA Medical center in San Francisco, CA.

Thank you,

SSVF Program Office