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HUD Awards WPCOG Regional Housing Authority 10 Housing Vouchers for Homeless Veterans

On September 22, 2023, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) awarded $16.1 million in HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) vouchers to 71 Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) across the country. HUD-VASH vouchers combine HUD rental assistance and VA clinical services to help homeless veterans and their families find and sustain permanent housing.

HUD awarded the Western Piedmont Council of Governments (WPCOG) Regional Housing Authority (RHA), in partnership with the Charles George Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Asheville, NC, ten housing HUD-VASH vouchers available on November 1, 2023. This allocation is in addition to the 20 HUD-VASH vouchers currently administered by WPCOG.

Currently, the RHA has 16 VASH clients that have leases. Since the program started in 2021, the RHA has issued 26 VASH vouchers.

According to the 2022 American Community Survey by the US Census Bureau, the Hickory MSA has 21,980 veterans, 1,414 living at or below the poverty level, and 7,081 living with a disability. Veterans comprise just 7% of the general population but account for 13% of the homeless population nationwide. HUD estimates that more than 40,000 veterans are homeless on any given night and twice that number experience homelessness at some point over the course of a year. 51% of homeless veterans have a disability, and 50% of the homeless veteran population are 51 or older.

“We are pleased to gain additional funding to assist veterans with their housing needs. They served our country, and it gives us great satisfaction to help meet the needs of our veterans. Many of them face struggles and these housing vouchers are one way to stabilize their difficult circumstances,” said WPCOG Executive Director Anthony Starr.

WPCOG staff looks forward to providing additional housing opportunities to veterans in our community. For questions about the program or the referral process, please contact Kelley Hayward at 828.485.4252


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