Over the past few years, cities, states, and even the federal government have devoted a lot of energy and resources to reducing veteran homelessness. And though those efforts have fallen short of their stated goal of all but eliminating the problem, there are still hundreds of thousands of veterans now in more stable living conditions than they experienced before. Furthermore, experts are getting more creative about how they can help even more.

One recent idea that seems to be gaining traction plays on an existing trend in the housing industry in general, according to the Racine Journal Times. "Tiny houses" have grown quite popular, particularly among younger adults, and as the name suggests provides living conditions in very small increments. The way this may work to help homeless veterans would be to build a number of these structures on a plot of land in a sort of "veterans' village" that centralizes assistance and fosters a sense of community among those who are struggling.

With more groups looking to end veteran homelessness, major progress is being made.With more groups looking to end veteran homelessness, major progress is being made.

A closer look
An organization called Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin has plans to build such a community in Racine, with a goal of creating more permanent housing for homeless vets, the report said. Some vets may find this situation preferable because they will get their own living quarters, and won't have to share a room with anyone. The proposal calls for 15 tiny houses on the property, but has yet to be approved by local authorities.

"[W]e're not just giving them a place to stay, it's not just one thing that we're doing, we're providing the whole package to give them a hand up," Jeff Gustin, co-founder and director of Veterans Outreach, told the newspaper.

Making a dent
Government data shows that over the past year, the number of homeless veterans living on the streets nationwide is down 17.4 percent, a drop of about 8,000 people, according to the Youngstown Vindicator. In the six years since the federal initiative was launched, the number has fallen 58 percent. Meanwhile, two states and 27 major cities now report they have effectively eliminated veteran homelessness within their borders.

The more creative organizations can get when it comes to finding solutions for this problem, the better off both they and the veterans living there will be. Often, all former service​ members need to get back on the right track in life is a little bit of help initially, and finding ways to provide it is becoming more popular.