Committee plans Point In Time Study

Staff report

SIDNEY — The Shelby County Continuum of Care (CoC) will be conducting the Point In Time Study between the hours of 8 p.m. on Jan. 23, 2018, and 6 a.m. on Jan. 24, 2018 (service-based counts may be done on the days following on where people spend the night on Jan. 23).

According to Judith Wells, chairman of the CoC committee, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires counts of sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons for communities receiving federal funding from the Continuum of Care and Emergency Solutions Grant Programs. HUD also requires the annual completion of a Housing Inventory Count (HIC), which provides an overview of a community’s homeless program inventory. Results of the PIT and HIC will be required to be recorded with the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio (COHHIO) before Feb. 9, 2018.

“The purpose of this count is to provide communities and governments a better idea of just how many people homelessness affects throughout the country and with that information, learn more about how to reduce the number of people who live without housing and develop programs and funding streams that will address the very real problem,” said Wells.

“Some believe if we don’t see homeless people sleeping in cardboard boxes, or on park benches, then we are among those communities that doesn’t have a homeless problem,” said Wells. “Nothing could be further from the truth.”

In addition, said Wells, on a local level, the PIT contributes to providing support for local planning efforts by identifying unmet needs and trends in size and characteristics of homeless populations, supplies guidance for development of more effective programming and services, raises community awareness of homelessness, assists with allocation of resources around local priorities, provides opportunities to conduct community outreach, engagement, screening and triage to identify people experiencing homelessness in need of services and assists in measuring progress toward homelessness reduction goals.

“We welcome your input,” said Wells. “Please join us at the Alpha Center, 320 E. Court St., Sidney. Representatives from the Shelby County Continuum of Care will be at the Alpha Center on Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018, during all three meals to speak with individuals who are experiencing homelessness and/or housing issues and on Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018, during breakfast.”

Applications from Shelby Metropolitan Housing Authority will be available and direction to resources that are available will be reviewed to meet the clients’ needs.

Anyone with questions or would like more information should contact Wells, 937-498-9898, ext. 5, or Jan Geuy, co-chair of the CoC Committee, 937-498-9758.

Staff report