Homeless to be counted in Dougherty Co. and 7 other counties - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Homeless to be counted in Dougherty Co. and 7 other counties

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By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

October 22, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Is the struggling economy putting more people out on the streets?

That's one question organizers of a homeless count in Georgia want to answer.

The Albany-Dougherty Department of Community and Economic Development is looking for volunteers to help count the homeless population. Last year, they found 192 homeless people in Dougherty County, but they admit that's likely an under count. For next year, they're redefining what homeless is to include families who may be living with relatives or friends or living in a motel. Organizers say it's important to get an accurate count.

"We can't attempt to address their problems their concerns their issues unless we know what they are. Currently we don't know what they are. We can think in our minds oh well they probably lost their job or got behind on their rent or maybe they overspent on their credit cards that's just assuming what happened we really don't know," said Lauren Miller, Count Organizer.

"A person who's homeless they need someone to care about what's happening to them and if the community doesn't care we're not much of a community," said Ginny Hayman, a volunteer.

The 2009 Georgia Homeless Count will be done Monday through Friday the week of January 25th. Seven other counties in our area will participate in the count.  To help with the count you can contact Thelma Watson at (229)483-7650.

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