Survey shows homelessness increased in Muscogee County for first time since 2016

Published: Mar. 9, 2022 at 5:35 PM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) -With the homeless population increasing in Muscogee County, area organizations are looking at new ways to solve the problem.

“We’re addressing the immediate needs, but with the long-term goal of connecting service providers to end the homelessness,” said Home for Good Executive Director Pat Frey.

Those goals are the driving factor of Home for Good’s Point in Time survey. This year’s survey reveals an increase in homelessness in Muscogee County – the first since 2016.

We’re looking at an increase of 4 to 5 percent,” said Frey.

Frey believes that the pandemic could be a factor in the increase. The survey has prompted Home for Good to look at different options to help those in need.

“We use this as one piece of the data to make decisions that drive what we need to do, what we need to fund and what we need to change,” explained Frey.

She also says the survey is showing new trends in the population in the area.

“We have a larger number of male or father led households than we’ve ever seen before,” said Frey.

One survey volunteer said improving area housing issues could help solve the problem.

As a Housing Specialist with the Salvation Army, Kimberly Allen understands the issue well.

“We need more housing,” said Allen. “If we all come together, the faith-based community, the housing community and landlords -- especially private landlords, I think we can get more people off the streets,” said Allen.

Frey said with donations from the community and grants Home for Good was able to assist many people during the pandemic.

For information on Home for Good’s services you can visit their website here.

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