LexCount will determine how the pandemic impacted Lexington’s homeless

For the first time since 2020, Lexington is completing a count of the homeless population in the city.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Wednesday night, Volunteers visited dozens of outdoor locations in Lexington where people experiencing homelessness might be found, sleeping. The annual count has been going on since 2005. This will be the first count since 2020, which will really show what the pandemic did for the homeless population in the city.

In 2020, the total homeless population was 689. No official count was done in 2021 because of the pandemic. The Lexington Rescue Mission says in the last six months, it’s seen a big increase in the number of people coming by on a day-to-day basis.

“It’s really sad because we have great shelters in town, but our goal is to try to reach out to them where they’re at and see how we can encourage them, try to get them into shelter and then really try to work with them to get out of homelessness,” says Laura Carr, executive director of the Lexington Rescue Mission.

The Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention says usually LexCount is a big event with hundreds of volunteers, but because of COVID, this year, volunteers put together their own teams totaling just under 100 people.

“It helps us gauge trends, what our population looks like, the services that we can offer, and how we can maybe do things a little different to provide the services that they need,” says Polly Rudick, director of the Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention.

The data from the count won’t be out for a while, but the city is ready to see the impact COVID has had on the homeless.

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