Homeless in King County - the One Night Count

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The annual One Night Count of people who are homeless in King County takes place at the end of January 2010. This marks the 30th year that the Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness (SKCCH) and Operation Nightwatch have organized volunteers to see how many of our neighbors are homeless and without shelter. 

We carry out this One Night Count for two reasons: to document the nature and extent of homelessness in King County, and to build public engagement and action around the issue. When more people stand up, speak up, call, write and advocate for the smart policies and strong investments we need, we can end this crisis.

There are two parts to the One Night Count:

1. Counting who is in emergency shelter and transitional housing programs. Staff from the King County Community Services Division, Homeless Housing Program coordinate the survey.

2. A street count of people who are homeless and without shelter, staying outdoors, in vehicles, or makeshift shelters.  SKCCH coordinates the Street Count in partnership with our member organizations and hundreds of volunteers from all walks of life.

How does the count work? Teams of Count Volunteers go out with trained team leaders to pre-arranged areas.  Teams ride "Night Owl" buses, and collect information from area hospitals, the Sobering Center, and Tent Cities. The count is carried out between 2 and 5 am.

For more information, please see the SKCCH web site or call SKCCH Executive Director, Alison Eisinger, at 206-357-3148.

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