In an effort to assess the effectiveness of the city of Santa Monica’s efforts to address homelessness, volunteers will conduct an annual street-by-street count of homeless individuals on the night of Jan. 30.
The surveys allow officials to
understand changes in trends among the city’s homeless populations; adjust the types of programs and services available according to need; comply with U.S. Housing and Urban Development and local stakeholder requirements; and raise public awareness about the issue of homelessness.
Past counts have indicated a reduction in homelessness and demonstrated the tangible effects of the city’s Action Plan to Address Homelessness, local programs and initiatives, officials said. Last year’s count showed the city maintained the 34 percent reduction in street homelessness documented in 2010, with over 150 fewer people sleeping on city streets since 2009.
The effort involves approximately 200 volunteers who travel the streets Jan. 30-31, from 10:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. A kickoff event for volunteers will be held at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, East Wing, where they will receive training and will deploy in teams to cover every area of the city by foot and by car.
At the same time, homeless individuals will be counted in shelters, transitional programs, hospital emergency rooms and other overnight facilities.
Interested volunteers can RSVP online at: www.smgov.net/homelesscountvolunteer.aspx or by contacting Johanna Rodriguez at (310) 458-8701, or johanna.rodriguez@smgov.net.

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