VSS Objectives

VSS Objectives:

The key to success is to provide a needed service to Veterans, while providing a flexible means of compensation.  We will coach, mentor and provide resources of different venues for successful career planning and VA entitlement options to help Veterans meet today’s economic and housing challenges.

Primary Service Objectives Include:

To establish and grow a “Go to Center” for Veterans who are in need of assistance, job opportunities, education, housing, and other “Transition Services”. This was accomplished initially through the creation of a "Veteran Support Center" or VSC, that was set-up in parallel with Ms. Donaldson's Suri-Ridge Coffee Shop originally in 2013, and later in 2015 in Colorado Springs. This location helped to create a meetup spot for Veterans to meet with other Veterans and to identify various support sources and be connected to local resources.  The Coffee Shop was closed in late 2016 for commerical reasons, and will be re-started as a mobile Tiny House Coffee Shop in 2020 that will allow us to move our "VSC" to many locations in the Front-Range region of Colorado Springs where the need is great.

VSS focuses on the problems of Veteran Homelessness in El Paso County through three primary Support and Service platforms:

1. VSS|Track 

This is our primary sustainment services program where we provide emergency housing, (hotel stays) as well as food and medical support to homeless Veterans and their Familiies.  We also provide case management support services for all Veterans and their families that we service under VSS, and we offer case management support to other local Aid Agencies when needed.  We also manage donations and pro-bono contributions of Gas and Credit Cards, and Personal Items that are specifically focused on addressing these needs of Veterans and their families:

  • Yellow Cab and Mountain Metro Bus vouchers/passes (Single Fare or 21 Day Passes)
    Used to assist Veterans in getting to clinic for appointments, group therapy, etc.
  • $20 Gas Cards (Shell, King Soopers, Loaf-N-Jug, etc.).
    Used to assist Veterans in getting gas to make appointments, job interviews, etc.
  • $10 Gift Cards (Wal-Mart, Safeway, King Soopers, etc.).
    Used for Homeless Veteran’s Program to support vital Veteran needs.
  • House cleaning kits (mop, bucket, broom, toilet brush, cleaners, sponges, paper towels).
    Used for Veterans in transition to permanent residence.
  • Recreational passes (bowling, movies, zoo, and museums).
    Used to support Substance Abuse Transition Program recreational trips.
  • Toiletry items (toliet paper, body wash/shampoo, lip balm, shaving cream, toothbrush/paste/floss)
    Used for Veterans in transition to permanent residence or for Homeless Veterans.
  • Restaurant Gift Cards ($10-$25)
    Used to support Substance Abuse Transition Program rewards program for successful program completion and for Homeless Veterans.
  • Sports Equipment (Balls, Hacky-sacks, horseshoes, etc.)
    Used to support Substance Abuse Transition Program recreational trips.
  • Small children’s toys, coloring books, crayons, craft kits, etc.
    Used to support children of Veterans in transition to permanent residence and children of Homeless Veterans.

Over the years we have seen the VSS|Track program grow and develop into a vital "grassroots" solution locally for Veterans and their families who need immediate help, and don't have the luxury of time to jump through a lot of evaualtion and paperwork processing...  That's why we're focusing on developing an "Annual VSS|Track Sponsorship" Program with a benefactor or patron who can help VSS annually underwrite our costs in this vital services delivery area.  We would like to establish an annual budget of between $50,000 to $100,000 yearly for these services.  If your inerested in a sponsorship of this program contact us HERE

For More information about the complete VSS|Track Services Program click HERE

axisPointGraphic2. AxisPoint

Operating primarilly as an online data sharing platform, we developed the AxisPoint System to address emergency and transitional Veteran Lodging Needs, and it has evolved into a multi-purposed Veteran Information Intake system to help us manage our Veteran contacts and follow-up services.  We located the AxisPoint solution on a community oriented website (www.connectcore.org) so that it could be accessed in the future by other Veteran Support and Aid Agencies through a secure login feature that allows for access to our shared database of lodging properties and interconnecting them to Veterans and their families.  It's the goal AxisPoint Lodging Program to become a one-stop solution for creating a realtime and online inventory of available hotels and motel rooms in the community that can be reserved on a moments notice at reduced price points for emergency and short term Veteran stays.

Future Development: This system will also be updated in the future to create a "Family Direct Donation" Platform that will allow extended family members of a Veteran and their family to be able to contribute funds online throught the system to a Veteran that would be credited to a specialized VSS|Track Debit card that can be use to help offset housing, medical and family living costs.  This provides a way for Veterans and their families to stay in contact, (as the system provides for messaging services between the veteran and their family members) and allows for "optional methods" for estranged family relationships to still have the potential to be repaired in the future. 

For More information on AxisPoint click HERE

Poster1sm3. VSS|Villages

This is our lonmg term concept for the development and support of Long Term Sustainable Housing Solutions, based on the Tiny Home CLUSTER Community Concept developed by Ensemble Ventures.  The Tiny Home CLUSTER Communities concept that VSS and Ensemble has been exploring with DIY (Do it Yourself) Tiny House Builders, Commercial Tiny Home Builders, Local Housing Community Organizations, Existing Manufactured Housing Developers, Aid Agencies, City Planners, and Municipal Government officials over the course of the last 4 years… is really just the basic idea of creating a cluster of Tiny houses on Wheels or on Platforms in a compact and innovative “Pocket Neighborhood”. It’s designed to “look-like” and fit into a local community with just 10-20 tiny homes in each development or “VSS Village”

For More information on VSS|Villages click HERE

 

Ongoing Service Goals Includes:

1. To work with local aid agencies in El Paso County, (Like the RMHS – Rocky Mountain Human Services, Homefront Cares, Carmel and other Veteran Support providers.

2. To set-up and fund our Social Benefit Programs through Public Donations, PRI Grants from Non-Profit Agencies, and Fund Raising Events and Activities

3. To increase the number of Veterans served by 20% per year through superior performance & word-of-mouth referrals.

Tiny House Jamboree 2015

Tiny House Jamboree 2015

VSS, Ensemble Ventures and the "Tiny Home Cluster Community Concept":

During the Tiny House Jamboree held in Colorado Springs over the weekend of August 7-9th, 2015 VSS introduced for the first time and showcased an early concept overview of the Tiny Home CLUSTER Communities concept being developed by Ensemble Ventures. LLC to support the VSS/Villages initaitive that Veterans Support Solutions is creating to enable various third party Veteran Village Initaitives that are being developed locally in Colorado and nationwide by a variety of Veteran Support Groups.

THJbanner

  • Veterans Support Solutions, L3c is a Colorado-based Low-Profit Limited Liability and Social Impact Firm that has been providing a wide variety of Veteran Transition services since 2001.
  • Ensemble Ventures, LLC is a Colorado Springs-based Business Development Services Firm providing a full range of seed-stage business development, capital formation, and go to market soutions for start-up and mid-sized businesses for over 15 years.
  • Technology Management, Inc. is a Cleveland, Ohio based Fuel Cell Te
  • chnology Engineering and Manufacturing company that has developed an innovative "kilowatt scale" fuel cell solution that is ideal for commerical and residential applications.

Below are some high-level "Concept" overviews of Ensemble's Tiny Home CLUSTER Community Vision for VSS/Villages for VSS:

Poster1thumb  Poster2thumb  Poster3thumb  Poster4thumb

Together VSS and Ensemble are exploring the development of new veteran housing services and solutions to help address emergency, transitional and long term housing needs for Veterans in Colorado, and eventually nationwide in partnership alliances with a number of emerging "Veteran Village" initaitives.

Today we are working with local Veteran assistance agencies and organizations in the creation of emergency and transitional housing programs and services to help create an inventory of available and suitable lodging properties for homeless Veterans and their famlies.

Over the course of the next year we will be creating a unique and modular "Tiny House Capitalization, Configuration, and Construction Solution" that will allow for the creation of "Self-Contained" and "Interconnected" Tiny Houses that can be configured into a "Community Cluster" that can be located on property that is part of a "Veteran Village" development, or stand-alone in its on local plot of land, or part of another Real Estate development.

 

Tiny House Jamboree 2015 Video

Interview:

Mike Schmidt on Tiny Home CLUSTER Communities...

August 2015 - Colorado Springs, CO

THJlogolongDuring the Tiny House Jamboree  recently held in Colorado Springs over the weekend of August 7-9th, Mike Schmidt, the CEO of Enemble Ventures, LLC showcased an early concept overview of the Tiny Home CLUSTER Communities concept that is being developed by Ensemble Ventures and its Fuel Cell Technology Partner Technology Management, Inc. to support the VSS/Villages initaitive that Veterans Support Solutions is creating to enable various third party Veteran Village Initaitives that are being developed locally in Colorado and nationwide by a variety of Veteran Support Groups.  

A UCCS Student named Austin Neslerode walked into our exhibit booth and pointed a camera at Mike Schmidt and said he wanted to "share our idea with the world" on his facebook page.  So, he started his camera... and Mike started talking... 

Video is not visible, most likely your browser does not support HTML5 video

FuelCellPic 

TMI Solid Oxide Fuel Cell:

ensemb2Above right is a photograph of the TMI Fuel Cell enclosure and pop-up information poster we were showing at the Tiny House Jamboree that is a 1.5kW Solid Oxide Fuel Cell solution developed by Technology Management, Inc., that we have specified for use in the development of our Tiny Home CLUSTER Communities.  It was the FIRST display that was seen by the thousands of attendees at the Jamboree that was estimated to be close to 40,000 people over the 3-day weekend !  If you would like more information about this unique Fuel Cell Solution and how we are going to adapt it for use with VSS/Villages contact Ensemble Ventures at: http://www.ensembleventuresinc.com

Tiny House Jamboree 2016

Tiny House Jamboree 2016

Exploring the VSS/Villages Concept for Veteran Homelessness

thjafashot
 August  5-7, 2016 - Air Force Academy Grounds,  Colorado Springs, CO 

Overview:

VSSLogo1smVeterans Support Solutions, L3c and Ensemble Ventures, LLC returned for it's second year at the Tiny House Jamboree as an exhibitor to showcase some of their innovative solutions for the creation of self-sustaining tiny-house-based “Pocket Neighborhoods” that can be developed into “Veteran Villages” which are designed to help reduce Veteran Homelessness.  This year we announced our upcoming plans for the development of a “Mock-Up Village” Project in El Paso County (targeted for Q3 2017) where we will be creating an initial small scale “VSS/Veteran Village” that will highlight our unique Tiny House designs and Support services for Veterans.

ensemb2aIn addition, Ensemble provided updates on the development of its unique “Tiny Home CLUSTERING Communities” concept demonstrating how clusters of low-Cost, energy efficient Tiny Homes can be developed and integrated together in “Cluster Communities” using advanced Micro-Grid Power Management Technology, Distributed Generation energy solutions, (using kilowatt-scale fuel cells), the application of Micro Heating and Cooling Solutions to reduce building costs, and the utilization of advanced Bio-Waste Management solutions to cut down on water and waste management.

Huge Turnout and Expanded Facilities at the Air Force Academy:

The turnout for the 2015 Tiny House Jamboree that was held at the Mining Museum Grounds in Colorado Springs was approximately 43,000.  For 2016, the show organizers knew they would be surpassing this number of attendees, and decided to approach the Air Force Academy to see if the Jamboree could be held on the Air Force Academy grounds, (just outside Falcon Stadium).  The Academy is familiar with the process of holding sports events at the stadium, with 25K to 40K in attendance and has large fields for car parking.  This was one of the first times they decided to allow an outdoor commercial event to be held on their grounds near the stadium.  It was good they agreeded...  because the total turned for the Jamboree for 2016 was just north of 55,000 for the 3 days of the event over the August 3-day weekend, (Aug 5-7th).

Ensemble and VSS decided to improve the look and feel of its 10x10 booth space and created a "booth inside a booth" concept using a pop-up display wall to showcase it's concept diagrams and illustrations for it's VSS/Villages Concept.   Below are the "Before" and "After" shots of our booth in development and what it looked like at the show... Just click each image for an expanded pop-up image.

  thjevandvssprepthumb  vssandevbooththumb2  vssandevbooththumb2

 

Tiny House Jamboree 2016 Think Tank

Tiny House Jamboree 2016 Think Tank:

Tiny Think Tank Panel Presentation and Tiny Home Industry Association Opportunity:

Several months before the 2016 Jamboree, the staff at ecoCabins, (the sponsor of the Tiny House Jamboree) asked VSS's Co-Founder Mike Schmidt, if he might consider chairing a panel at the Jamboree to bring together a number of the industry leaders to discuss the “Big Challenges facing the Tiny Industry” in a “Think Tank” session on the last day.   Of course this was another good opportunity for VSS at the Jamboree to promote it's initiatives and to continue to talk about the need for Affordable Housing Soutions, and the development of our VSS/Villages concept for addressing Veteran Homelessness.

thjtinyhousepanelThe Panel session entitled "Tiny Think Tank" was held on Sunday Aug 7th and included the founders of two of the leading tiny house builders in the marketplace today, (ecoCabins and Sprout Tiny Homes) as well as the planning and zoning director from the City of Walsenberg, CO. At the conclusion of the panel session, (which was done in concert with the announcement of the formation of the Tiny Home Industry Association), the panelests received a lot of really good feedback on the panel session that had touched on a wide variety of topics and challenges facing the Tiny House Industry, (i.e. Building Codes, Zoning, Ordinances, etc). Many of the attendees thought we were on the right tract to self police the industry and address these issues head on.

The experiences at both the 2015 and 2016 Tiny House Jamboree has enabled VSS and Ensemble to see on the inside of this developing industry and to meet all the key players and developers who are working to grow the Tiny Home community space nation-wide. In addition,we were able to meet a number of housing developers as well as citizens and city representatives from a wide ranging roster of cities across the country who are actively developing local Tiny House communities. 

For "Historical" information on the Tiny House Jamboree: 

https://www.citylab.com/equity/2015/08/a-big-turnout-for-a-tiny-house-jamboree/401498/

Post Event Coverage from the Independent

indylogo

During the Jamboree, VSS had a chance to meet with Nat Stein, (one of the young, and recently added “at-large” reporters for the Colorado Springs Independent), which is one of three local newspapers here in the Springs .   Nat attended the Jamboree to get a feel for what this new industry was all about, and to meet with and talk with some of the local companies attempting to create affordable housing solutions as this was a major theme of her article.

We had a chance to meet her in our booth at the show, (Booth #17 Ensemble/VSS), and later VSS Co-Founder Midid an in-depth telephone interview about a week later.  Mike covered a lot of ground regarding the Tiny House Industry... but could tell she was “diving” into the deep end of the “Legal and Regulatory” pool to really understand more about where the challenges and roadblocks might be for the realization of low cost housing.  It was not a bad first cut for someone new to the industry and she managed to get a number of perspectives from different viewpoints to create a balanced article that featured VSS and our Pocket Neigboorhood concept for the development of VSS/Vilages.

Below is the link to the Cover Story article in the Independent that just appeared in the digital online version of paper today, (August 17th) and will be appearing in the print version that is distributed throughout the Rocky Mountain Region.

Low-cost tiny homes could help alleviate the housing shortage

 

gfmbanner3

Welcome to VSS !

Veterans Support Solutions, L3c (VSS) mission is to enhance the quality of life for Veterans and their families through creative support services, responsive career planning, and participating in and collaborating with local community agencies for the benefit of uniformed service personnel, their families and survivors – including Active Duty, Reserves, National Guard and Retirees.

About VSS:

  • Veterans Support Solutions, L3c (VSS) is a Low-Profit, Limited-Liability Company or "Social Benefit" organization founded in 2015 and located in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
  • VSS has expertise in a wide range of veteran career planning services (since 2001) and is now addressing the emergency & transitional housing challenges faced by a growing Veteran market.
  • VSS is working with a number of local non-profit and for-profit organizations to facilitate and enable its overall services vision.
  • VSS offers services to enable Veterans to take control of their personal & professional lives and provide them with the tools to Transition to Civilian life successfully.
  • We are focused on helping to address challenges Veteran Housing through a number of innovative support services and alliances.

For More information:

 

 

Login Form

VSSLogo2
 
Mailing Address (Woodland Park):
1067 East US Hwy 24 #220
Woodland Park CO 80863
www.veterans-support-solutions.com 
goFundMeLogo2sm
For More information about our GoFundMe Campaign 
to help VSS develop responsive emergency and transitional housing
services for homeless Veterans and to develop "Long Term" and
Sustainable Housing for Veterans that can be tailored into
"VSS|Veteran Villages" across the country click the "GoFundMe Logo".