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Homeless care council seeks volunteers for survey

The Homeless Care Council of Northwest Alabama is searching for volunteers to assist with a Point-in-Time Count set for Jan. 31.

“Conducting a Point-in-Time Count is important to all communities. The count is a tally of who is homeless on a given night and provides a snapshot of who experiences homelessness throughout the year,” council executive director Christa Martin explained.

The Point-in-Time Count is a one-day, statistically reliable, unduplicated count of sheltered and unsheltered homeless individuals and families in Franklin and five other surrounding counties.

Martin said volunteers will be stationed throughout the community to survey homeless individuals. They will complete a survey that takes less than five minutes of demographic information.

“This is the first time in several years we have been able to do a complete count of the entire area,” Martin said.

The information is used locally to help the council determine how to best serve the area.

“If we determine there is a higher number of families and children than before, then we can tweak our services to target that demographic. If we see an increase in veterans, we can call in local providers that help that demographic,” Martin explained.

She said on a national scale, the Department of Housing and Urban Development uses the information to determine funding for the following year.

For more information, contact Martin at hccnwal@gmail.com or Ashley Smith at asmith@uwshoals.org.

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