Housing First is a program that provides the homeless community the immediate housing, with the case management needed for stable living to follow. On September 4th, 2014, Hawai’i News Now, interviewed 88-year-old Air Force Veteran Thomas Murray V, who was placed in subsidized housing through the Housing First grant in June of 2013.
Mr. Murray was one of the first homeless seniors to get a rental through the U.S.VETS Housing First program last year. U.S.VETS Chief Operating Officer, Darryl Vincent, speaks about the philosophy of Housing First and how U.S.VETS is adopting approach in order to address needs of chronically homeless, vulnerable, unsheltered individuals. “We have some in town, some as far out as Waianae and Leeward coast,” explained Vincent. “They’re women, they’re men, they’re young. They’re older.”
The Housing First team at U.S.VETS works with Homeless Outreach programs to identify chronically homeless to match them with an apartment, having them pay 30 percent of their income. With this grant we are able to partner with other community agencies including Kalihi Palama Health Care, Waikiki Health, C. Peraro Consulting, Catholic Charities, and Helping Hands Hawaii, to assist the veteran population of the vulnerable members of Hawaii’s homeless community.