Volunteers Needed for Homeless Count – You Can Help

Homeless-SignThe Culver City Homelessness Committee is seeking volunteers for the 2017 Homeless Count, which will take place on Wednesday, January 25 beginning at 8 pm. Culver City’s Homeless Count is being conducted in coordination with the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority which, beginning this year, will conduct the Count annually.

Committee Chair Ira Diamond, says “The Count is performed through the efforts of volunteer teams. The Committee will coordinate volunteers on the night of the Count, so if you come as a team of four, you can go out with your own group. Businesses, volunteer clubs, faith-based groups, and families/friends are encouraged to form groups of four and join us on January 25, 2017. Individuals are also welcome, as we’ll pair them up with others to form a group of four.”

The schedule for January 25 is as follows:

8 pm — Arrival and registration at the Culver City Senior Center (4095 Overland Avenue in Culver City)
Enjoy refreshments and food items from local Culver City Vendors
9 pm — Brief training for volunteers
9:30 pm – 10 pm — Volunteers are sent to their precinct for the Count
Midnight — Volunteers return
The Count is an enumeration (counting) of the number of people experiencing homelessness in Culver City. All cities on the Westside of Los Angeles County will conduct the Count the same night to avoid duplication of individuals counted in neighboring cities. The numbers generated by the Count are statistically analyzed to estimate the number of homeless individuals in a broader area. Since it is not possible to locate every homeless person, each individual that is found “counts” as more than one person for purposes of statistical analysis. Based on the data collected, the County of Los Angeles, State of California, and the federal government review the results to determine resource allocations to Culver City for housing and homelessness assistance programs.

Why is the Homeless Count critical?

The Homeless Count is critical because it leads to the distribution of resources for those in need by determining the need of each locality. On the night of the Count, volunteers either walk or drive through their assigned precinct and tally the homeless individuals they observe. Direct contact with persons observed is not made by Count volunteers (however, based upon Count data, homeless service professionals will be dispatched to assess the situation and offer information and resources.)

Further, all volunteers are trained in safety and tallying procedures prior to the Count. Finally, although the schedule listed above anticipates volunteers concluding the Count sometime around midnight, volunteers tend to return much earlier. The Culver City Police Department will be participating.

How do I sign up to help?

To sign up, please go to www.theycountwillyou.org (Culver City is in SPA 5) or email [email protected]. If you have any questions, contact Ms. Tevis Barnes, Culver City’s Housing Administrator, at 310-253-5782. Volunteers over the age of 18 will be able to deploy. Minors, however, can volunteer with set up and assisting at the Senior Citizen Center. Volunteers are needed to help set up, serve food and drinks, and clean up.

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