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Volunteers Will Hit the Streets to Count People Experiencing Homelessness July 26, 2017

(Last Updated On: July 25, 2017)

WINSTON-SALEM, NC – Volunteers Will Hit the Streets to Count People Experiencing Homelessness on July 26, 2017

Twice a year, the lives of people experiencing homelessness have a greater potential to be changed, thanks to a program coordinated by United Way of Forsyth County (UWFC) and the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Continuum of Care.

Starting at 8 p.m.  July 26, 2017, dozens of volunteers will meet at Samaritan Ministries 414 E NW Blvd, and hit the streets throughout the night to count the number of people sleeping outside. The exercise, called Homeless Point-in-Time Count is a one-day, un-duplicated count of sheltered and un-sheltered homeless individuals and families that happens across the country.

The event is part of a national initiative to measure and combat chronic homelessness. The goal is to give the local and federal government an idea of how many people are experiencing homelessness in the area, and to make sure there are enough appropriate services to help them.

Volunteers will be organized into groups of four or five and in two shifts, 8pm-12am and 1am-4am. Organizers will be assembling bags of necessities to hand out to homeless men and women and are seeking donations of individual tissue packets, sun screen, bottled water, canned foods with pop-tops or pre-packaged food, and plastic utensils.

Before the volunteers take to the streets, they will receive training on personal safety, how to identify homeless individuals, where homeless individuals may be sleeping and how to survey individuals experiencing homelessness.

For more information or to register to volunteer, contact Kathleen  Wiener at Kathleen.Wiener@uwforsyth.org or 336.721.9378.

Community residents may register here:

http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=uez4ixuab&oeidk=a07ee9xct4t1b616077

In October 2015, Winston-Salem was certified as having met the goal of ending veteran homelessness. Now the community is attempting to end chronic homelessness by 2017. Both of these milestones are part of Built for Zero, a national campaign to end veteran and chronic homelessness.

Information learned from previous counts has helped officials to develop more efficient resource programs to better serve those experiencing homelessness .

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