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Volunteers needed for annual Snohomish County Point-in-Time Homeless Count

Snohomish County Department will conduct the annual Point-In-Time Homeless Count on Tuesday, January 23, 2018. Volunteers are needed for different parts of the county on three-hour shifts between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm.

From a Snohomish County news release.

In collaboration with human service providers and community volunteers, the Snohomish County Department of Human Services is conducting the annual Point-In-Time Homeless Count on Tuesday, January 23, 2018.

The annual count is an important tool in the community’s efforts to assess the number of homeless individuals and families in Snohomish County, as well as to determine ways of ending homelessness.

The count covers people staying in emergency shelters, transitional housing, and on the street or other places not meant for habitation.

Volunteers are needed for different parts of the County between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm on Tuesday, January 23rd.

Human service providers, county staff, and community volunteers will join together in this effort to respectfully count the number of families and individuals who are homeless in our community.

The results of the count will help ensure that vital federal and state funding continues to come into the community to fight homelessness. Data from the annual count is also used to help understand how widespread homelessness is in Snohomish County and who is most affected.

The Point-In-Time Count is only a count of some of those who are homeless at one particular time. By itself, it is not a predictor of how many people will be homeless or receive housing resources throughout the rest of the year, but when used along with other data, can help paint a picture of the need and how well we as a community are doing in efforts to address the problem of homelessness. Priorities for state and national funding and planning for local programs and systems are based on Point-in-Time data.

“Every person living on our streets or in the woods deserves to be helped,” said Dave Somers, Snohomish County Executive.

“I encourage every person with compassion in their heart to help with this important effort. With our skyrocketing housing costs, some slip into homelessness simply because of illness or being unemployed. Veterans, families, and our elderly deserve as much help as we can muster, and the Point-In-Time Count will help us determine how best to serve our neighbors’ needs.”

During the 2017 count, 515 individuals in 447 households reported they were unsheltered. Another 551 persons in 385 households were without a permanent place to stay and were temporarily housed in emergency shelter or transitional housing. There were 66 veterans, 313 chronically homeless individuals, and the age of homeless persons ranged from 7 months to 76 years old.

Volunteers are asked to commit to a three-hour period during the January 23rd count. All training and materials will be provided at the sites specified below.

To volunteer or for more information, please contact one of the area leads below:

  • Central County - Whitney Summers, email, 425-374-6331.
  • North County - Alex Lark, go to housinghope.org for volunteer opportunities.
  • East County - Janos Kendall, email, 360-794-1022.
  • South County - Nora Karena, email, 425-774-9843 x236.
  • Youth - Claire Petersen, email, 425-259-5802 x129.

Emphasis on the Point in Time Count began in 2006, with Snohomish County’s approval of the local homeless plan that included strategies for ending homelessness. While noteworthy progress has been made, there still remains a daunting effort ahead to provide solutions for people experiencing and at imminent risk of homelessness.

More information on the PIT history and methodology may be found on the Human Services Point in Time Count webpage: Point in Time webpage.

For more detailed information on the count, please contact Robin Hood at 425-388-7266.

Snohomish County Point in Time unsheltered homeless county. Image courtesy of Snohomish County.

Snohomish County Point in Time unsheltered homeless count. Image courtesy of Snohomish County.

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