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Funders Together Announces Homeless Veterans Working Group

Funders Together to End Homelessness Today Announced the Formation of a Special Working Group Focused on Veterans Homelessness.

Boston, MA (January 12, 2012) ― Funders Together to End Homelessness today announced the formation of a special working group focused on veterans homelessness. All grantmakers with an interest in the welfare of America’s veterans are invited to join.

“America has made important progress reducing homelessness among our veterans in the last year or two, but there is still much work to be done if we are to meet the goal of ending veterans homelessness by 2015,” said Tom Nurmi, chair of the new working group as well as a Funders Together board member and trustee of the William S. Abell Foundation in Washington, D.C. “Philanthropy has an important role in achieving this goal and we will be working with other key stakeholders around the country in sharing information and working together to promote best practices to end veteran homelessness.”

The purpose of the working group, which will be known as the “Funders Together Working Group on Veterans Homelessness,” is to ensure the availability of current information about veterans homelessness to the philanthropic community and to build a national network of committed funders working to end homelessness among our veterans. The group also hopes to help represent the voice of philanthropy on this important subject in various forums around the country.

In addition to Nurmi, other group members are: Bill Pitkin, director of domestic programs for the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation in Los Angeles, CA; Sonya Campion, co-founder and trustee of the Campion Foundation in Seattle, WA; and David Wertheimer, deputy director for Pacific Northwest initiatives for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, WA. All three sit on the board of Funders Together to End Homelessness.
According to the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, approximately 67,000 military veterans were homeless on a single night in 2011—a 12 percent decline since 2010.

Unfortunately, however, veterans are still disproportionately represented within the general homeless population. Further, there is reason to expect that homelessness among veterans may increase as troops return home from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. The federal government’s plan to end homelessness includes the goal of ending veterans homelessness by 2015 by focusing on increasing access to supportive housing, case management, and other services.

To join the Funders Together Working Group on Veterans Homelessness or obtain additional information, please contact Allison Silva, member services officer for Funders Together, at allison@funderstogether.org or 617-236-2244.

Funders Together to End Homelessness is the only national network for funders working to end homelessness. Membership in Funders Together, an approved 501(c)(3), is open to all grantmakers currently engaged or interested in funding homelessness or affiliated programs. For more information on Funders Together to End Homelessness, please visit www.FundersTogether.org.

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