Regina volunteers help to determine extent of homelessness in the city

Around 130 volunteers organized for this year’s PiT-Count. Jason Wood / Global News

Volunteers recently helped with a Point-in-Time Count, a strategy used to help determine the extent of homelessness in Regina on any given night, or at a single point in time.

The Point-in-Time Count is run through the federal government’s Reaching Home program.

Addison Docherty is the executive director of Flow Community Projects, which put on the event in Regina this week.

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Docherty told Global News that there have been Point-in-Time Counts in 2015 and 2018, and now 2021.

“Before we were doing Point-in-Time Counts we didn’t really know we had a homeless problem. Homelessness looks different in Regina,” Docherty said.

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He added that Point-in-Time Counts raise a lot of awareness about homelessness.

“There are people that need help and counts like this help us identify what some of the barriers are, (and) why people are losing their housing.”

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Docherty explained with this information collected, there’s an opportunity for conversations to be held at higher and lower levels, with people who provide services to the city’s most vulnerable.

Around 130 volunteers were organized for this year’s PiT-Count. Volunteers were given an area in the city and sent out to ask individuals to participate in an anonymous housing survey.

“Through that survey and data collection, you figure out how many people at any point-in-time are experiencing homelessness on a night-to-night basis in your community,” Docherty explained.

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In 2018, the Point-in-Time Count identified 286 people as experiencing homelessness.

In a couple of months a report will be generated from the survey. Docherty described this report as a “tool”.

“That data can be used to tell the story,” Docherty said.

Docherty said the survey and report help guide the advocates and the community’s response to homelessness.

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