by Deb Havens
Last week 27 people from the Kent County area bundled up on one of the coldest nights of the year to check under bridges, overpasses, and parks. They were looking for their fellow citizens, people technically classified as “homeless.” Jim Talen, coordinator for Kent County’s 2015 Point in Time Count of homeless residents, says total numbers of homeless in Kent County are expected to range somewhere between 650 to 800. “Last year we counted a little over 790 and we expect to be close to that this year,” says Talen. Numbers are not broken out by community.
Rebecca Rynbrandt, Director of Planning and Community Development for the City of Wyoming, says that communities in Kent County work together to care for the homeless, so services are centralized. “We want everyone to know that calling 2-1-1 is the way to access services for people who fear they will become homeless or those who already are.” The City of Wyoming publishes a pamphlet on homeless issues available at this link: Community_Outreach_Trifold.pdf