City seeks volunteers to help with homeless population count

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Lexington’s Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention (OHPI) is seeking volunteers to assist with their annual count of homeless individuals and families in Fayette County, known as LexCount.

“LexCount is extremely important because it gives us a continuous longitudinal look of how effective the city’s efforts are in reducing and ending homelessness,” said Polly Ruddick, director of OHPI.

Ruddick says they rely on volunteers to help get the most accurate record of Lexington’s homeless population, which in turn allows stakeholders to more effectively target resources and plan for the future.

LexCount 2019 will be held on the evening of Wednesday, Jan. 30.

Volunteers will be grouped in teams and go to unsheltered and street locations to help with the count.

Each volunteer is required to take a training prior to LexCount so they know the rules for the count and how to safely participate in the process. Trainings will be held the week prior to the count, on Jan. 22 and 24.

LexCount is a one night snapshot of the homeless population in Lexington and Fayette County. The official count includes people who are temporarily residing in emergency shelters and transitional housing programs, as well those who are unsheltered.

Last year, 685 individuals were counted. Of those counted, 67 were children living in emergency shelter. No children were found living unsheltered.

The 2018 count was a 55 percent decrease in homelessness since this same count occurred in January 2014, the year before the OHPI was created.

For more information the Office of Homelessness Prevention & Intervention, click HERE.

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