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live Winner / 2015

LA Veterans in Need: IAVA’s Rapid Response Referral Program

LA Veterans in Need: IAVA’s Rapid Response Referral Program

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA)

This grant will support IAVA’s Rapid Response Referral Program (RRRP), providing LA’s more than 320,000 veterans and their families with support as they transition to civilian life—which can be challenging in LA, where homelessness and unemployment rates among veterans are higher than average and where it can take over a year for a VA claim to be processed. IAVA will hold numerous community outreach activities to provide vets with access to RRRP and its holistic, integrated partner services.

In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • County of Los Angeles

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Engage residents and stakeholders
  • Expand a pilot or a program
  • Advocate with policymakers and leaders
  • IAVA will also continue to advocate for veterans in LA; we supported Vietnam Veterans of America as they campaigned for improvements at VA West LA Medical Center.

How will your proposal improve the following “Live” metrics?

  • Healthcare access
  • Housing affordability
  • Rates of homelessness
  • Rates of mental illness
  • Percentage of LA communities that are resilient (Dream Metric)

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

IAVA monitors each client’s case through Salesforce, the database that confidentially tracks our interactions with veterans and core program outcomes. Salesforce enables IAVA to process real-time information on: the number of RRRP clients served; the number and type of referrals provided to clients; the number of benefits confirmed as received; and the length of time it takes to resolve each client’s case.

IAVA also receives direct feedback from RRRP clients. Once their cases have closed, clients complete surveys in which they report their level of satisfaction with their case managers and whether RRRP helped reduce their stress levels. RRRP clients consistently rate the level of service they receive from RRRP VTMs highly. Written feedback further illuminates clients’ experiences with RRRP. “Thank you,” one wrote recently. “You may have just saved my life man.” This is just one example of the warm words of appreciation that RRRP clients have shared.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Volunteers/staff (human capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Community outreach
  • Network/relationship support