HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The North Alabama Coalition for the Homeless (NACH) is conducting its annual "Point in Time Homeless Count" from 6:00 p.m. on Monday through 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday. During this time, the organization's members are interviewing homeless individuals, homeless families and agencies that provide services to homeless people in Madison, Morgan and Limestone Counties.
"We go out to the camps, we go out to the emergency shelters, as well as the street population," Executive Director Lineise Arnold said. "We actually get a count of all the homeless individuals that are in Madison and North Alabama actually."
The 24-hour study shows the number of people and families who are homeless in the area on any given night. Then, this helps NACH determine the needs of those they interview.
"We'll go and we'll ask them on tomorrow, where did you sleep on last night," Arnold said.
The homeless count report is also crucial in developing policies and obtaining federal funding which will help these men, women and children. The Department of Housing and Urban Development requires NACH to do this count each January in order to secure its federal funding.
"It gives us the opportunity to do a gap analysis to determine where we need to increase funding sources, where we need to increase programs," Arnold explained.
NACH is an organization of people who care about homeless people and their difficulties, and they are committed to providing them services and ultimately preventing homelessness in North Alabama.
NACH will continue collecting data until the end of the week to understand where the clients slept on January 30. This way, the outreach programs that go out over the weekend will have a chance to interview the people they serve.
At this time, NACH does not need any additional volunteers to help with the count.