Homeless Coalition of Northeast Alabama Annual Point in Time Count

The JSU Social Work program continued its 8 year involvement with the Homeless Coalition of Northeast Alabama as volunteers in the annual Point in Time Count of the homeless in Etowah and Calhoun counties on January 21, 2015. JSU faculty and students from the Social Work program have volunteered since 2007. Twenty-eight Social Work students and 3 Social Work faculty (Dr. Nancy Francisco Stewart, Ms. Robyn Snider and Mr. Jonathan Adams) spread out across agencies and sites where the homeless might spend the night or seek services in Gadsden and Anniston. The Point in Time count is an annual event across the nation to identify the needs and the number of homeless individuals and families as part of the "Continuum of Care" requirements to receive federal funding from the Housing and Urban Development grants. Across Alabama and the nation, there are homeless coalitions made up of faith based agencies and organizations, health care and social service agencies and towns and cities who want to address the needs of people in their communities who are homeless. Each coalition selects a day in January to do the count. Our communities benefit by the development of new relationships and partnerships between individuals and voluntary and governmental organizations as well as new programs and services. The count information on those who are "sheltered" or "unsheltered" will be reported to HUD, the State of Alabama and to the members of the Homeless Coalition. On January 28 at 5 pm, JSU will have a "Sleep-out for the Homeless" event coordinated by Donovan Wilson, Vice President of the Resident Housing Association at TMB for the students and staff to lend solidarity to the efforts to serve the homeless in our communities. Dr. Nancy Stewart will be a speaker as well as Mr. Barry Hooks, a JSU graduate who is now a planner for the Homeless Coalition of Northeast Alabama. The event is free and open to all.