Volunteers Worked Overnight Conducting 2019 Annual Point-In-Time Homeless Count

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Volunteers Worked Overnight Conducting 2019 Annual Point-in-Time Homeless Count

87 volunteers

22 teams 

29 people found sleeping outside 

Every year, volunteers search all over Lake County to interview and offer assistance to unsheltered people experiencing homelessness during the annual Point-In-Time (PIT) Homeless Count. The information gathered is critical to understanding where resources should be spent and helps evaluate current and future programs to aid the homeless.

This year, 87 volunteers helped document the need in Lake County communities by gathering data and providing outreach to the homeless.Volunteers made contact with 29 people experiencing homelessness, compared to 24 last year. This number will increase over the next few days as volunteers conduct further interviews and pull additional data from local shelters and agencies.

Lake County Board Chair Sandy Hart and Vice-Chair Mary Ross Cunningham have participated in the annual PIT Count for the last few years. They were joined last night by fellow board members Linda Pedersen and Dick Barr, along with other local officials and community leaders.  

"The boots on the ground effort is incredibly important because it allows us to provide supplies and connect people with the services they need," said Chair Hart. "The PIT Count is vital to our mission of ending chronic homelessness in Lake County because it produces a snapshot census of the homeless population. I'm proud to be out on the streets volunteering alongside my fellow Lake County residents." 

During last night's event, two people were transported to a local homeless shelter. Volunteers also distributed items that were donated to the cause, such as blankets, hygiene supplies and food.

Brenda O’Connell, Continuum of Care Coordinator for Lake County and one of the event organizers, said, "The PIT Count is conducted overnight because we really want to find where people spend the night. The data collected helps us develop housing solutions, connect people with the services they need and tell if we're close to ending chronic homelessness in the County. We had an incredible group of volunteers who worked tirelessly overnight and into the early morning, and we appreciate their time and dedication." 

The Lake County PIT Count is typically held on the last Wednesday in January because it coincides with the national effort by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to conduct annual homeless counts across the country during the last 10 days of the month. Due to the extreme cold last week, the PIT Count was postponed until Feb. 6. Service providers in Lake County took extra care to make sure that those unsheltered homeless individuals had access to warming centers, shelter and safety last week. 

Lake County hosts the PIT Count in partnership with the Lake County Coalition for the Homeless. In addition to the Point-In-Time Homeless Count, the Lake County Coalition for the Homeless and other partners work throughout the year on many programs and initiatives. 

Lake County residents can help make a difference by supporting the Lake County Coalition for the Homeless and the various member organizations. Each organization has different needs or ways to get involved. 

PIT Count

Volunteers from one of the PIT Count teams prepare before searching their assigned area.

Brenda O'Connell
Continuum of Care Coordinator 
Email: BOConnell@lakecountyil.gov
Phone: 847-309-6289