On a single night in 2014, there were more than a half million homeless people in the U.S.
Around the same time this year, volunteers in all 50 states will count the number of homeless in the major counties of the state as part of a National Alliance to End Homelessness report.
The report is called the Point in Time Count, which is a “coordinated national effort to obtain data about the nature and extent of homelessness across the country,” according to the Alliance’s website.
The report is handed off to congress to give lawmakers a close look at how states are affected by homelessness.
On January 28th, HRDC of Billings is participating in the P.I.T. count by sending local volunteers to several locations around town: the Billings Public Library, Family Service Inc., St Vincent de Paul, MRM Shelters, Community Crisis Center, Warming Center and the HUB.
The Billings non-profit is looking for people to spend about two to three hours at those locations, tallying the number of homeless.
In 2014, Montana reported 1,745 people to the alliance. Wyoming indicated 757 homeless.
The survey included both people who are living on the streets and other places not meant for habitation, as well as those living in shelters and transitional living programs.