When you join VSA at VCU, you are put into one of four houses (the names vary from year to year). Once you're in a house, you are thus given a family; there are around a dozen families within each house.
Houses exist to create a sense of competition and pride within the members. Each year, there are competitions such as: Capture the Flag, Dodgeball, and other activities. If you are a member, you will compete not only for your house, but for your family.