Every year, people in the community go out to identify and learn about the number of individuals who are experiencing homelessness.

The point-in-time count is a one-day count of people experiencing homelessness in the community and is a federal requirement.

In addition to counting people, those counting ask if those homeless if they are willing to take a survey.

The survey asks questions about life and experience and should take approximately 10-15 minutes.

The information that is provided will be used to learn more about the community needs, the needs of people experiencing homelessness in the region, possible risk factors for homelessness and to determine the level of funding communities should get to address homelessness.

Taking the survey is voluntary, and does not ask the name or any information that uniquely identifies the person that is homeless.

The goal of the Southside Continuum of Care Planning District #13 is to count all people in the counties of Halifax, Mecklenburg, Charlotte and Brunswick who meet HUD’s criteria for homelessness.

This includes individuals and families “living in a supervised publicly or privately operated shelter designated to provide temporary living arrangement (including congregate shelters, transitional housing and hotels and motels paid for by charitable organizations or by federal, state or local government programs for low-income individuals)” on the night of the count (HUD, 2014 guidance) or “with a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings, including a car, park, abandoned building, bus or train station, airport or camping ground” on the night of the count (HUD, 2014 guidance).

This year’s PIT will take place on Wednesday. This means that anyone who is homeless on the night of Jan. 22 should be counted. The count is from 6 p.m. on Wednesday to 6 a.m. on Thursday.