Fayette County holds annual homeless count

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Every year, Fayette County does a homeless count on the last Wednesday in January to get a snapshot of what homelessness looks like in the area.

Polly Ruddick is the director of the Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention.

She says her team of volunteers counted 787 people as homeless last year and 69 of those people were kids. Ruddick reports that’s about a 49% decrease since 2014.

“We’re starting to see a much older homeless population,” said Polly Ruddick.

Volunteers will canvas the county and count people who are in emergency shelters, transitional housing, and those who don’t have any place to go at all.

“We want to know where you are, we want to get to know you, we want to help you,” said Ruddick.

One of the spots volunteers will go is the Catholic Action Center.

The center’s director says the need is increasing. It has just over 130 beds and is always full.

“Each and every one of those numbers is one of our brothers and sisters who are experiencing homelessness,” said Ginny Ramsey, Catholic Action Center Director/Co-Founder.

The purpose of the count is to find out how big of a need there is and how the county can best use its resources to help.

“This will set our funding at the federal level for the next year, this will impact our state funding, and this definitely impacts the local funding that goes into the system,” said Ruddick.”

Ruddick says she hopes the numbers will at least stay steady so they can target where to put resources and funding.

If you want to volunteer, people will meet Wednesday night at Heritage Baptist Church on north Ashland at 7:45 p.m. Training will begin at 8 p.m.

The count happens from 10 p.m. until midnight.


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