In 2009, the HUD one day point in time survey was conducted during an ice and snow storm. So while the count of those staying in shelters will be correct, the street count not surprisingly fell from last year’s count. Also, the HUD definition of homeless does not include those staying with friends or family (insecure housing) or doubled/tripled up in housing. Homeless is defined as persons who reside in some form of emergency or transitional shelters, domestic violence shelters, runaway your shelters and places not meant for human habitation which includes streets, parks, alleys, abandoned buildings and stairways.
With this proviso, the count in Montgomery County was 1,247. This was an increase over last year’s count of 1,150 and a 17% increase since the 2005 count. Overlay this with 964 people moving into supportive housing in the last year to get a picture of the numbers and needs in the county. The good news is this is an increase of 72% over the last five years. People are being housed with services.
From 2008 to 2009
- Emergency shelter increased by 64% due to the economy.
- Transitional housing increased by 4%
- Permanent supportive housing increased by 28%
Bethesda Cares’ data show:
- More young people became clients, prior to Fall of 2007 average age was 40.
- Lunch program doubled from average of 35 to 70 people served daily.
- 160 households were kept from eviction or utility shut off in 2008.