Action Plan to Combat Homelessness

Community leaders say the number of people who are homeless and the length of time they are homeless are increasing.

The leaders say they are working to reverse that trend.

Members of Homeward Bound say realistically it may not be possible to completely end homelessness. But, idealistically, their vision is that everyone has a stable home.

Wednesday, they discussed their goals and five-year plan to try to make it happen.

Betty Sue Thomley just got a new cell phone from a local organization.

"I'm just nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs about it." She said.

It's assistance like that that those living in homelessness in Tallahassee say they appreciate.

The Big Bend Homeless Coalition conducted the "Point in Time" Survey back in January to count the number of homeless people in order to figure out how to better help them.

Thomley said, "It makes me feel good. I'm not, I don't feel like I'm on the bottom of the world no more. I'm slowly bobbing up, coming up."

The 2009 Point-in-time survey shows 741 men, women, and children were experiencing homelessness in Tallahassee.

The preliminary results from this year's survey show 683. But, local leaders say this does not include children in the school system as in previous years.

Tina Fisher is homeless. She said, "Help us to get a job, get a place to live and make sure medically, physically that we got a place that we can go, we got a job and we call it our own."

That's what community leaders are working on.

Homeward Bound revealed its action plan Wednesday. The goals include:

1. Increase the capacity of permanent supportive housing for people moving out of homelessness.
2. Create a centralized site to facilitate information and assistance, including intake, assessment, housing referrals, and supportive services.
3. Increase the capacity of mental health services and housing for people who are experiencing homelessness.
4. Increase the capacity of the Homelessness Continuum of Care (CoC) to access funding, and establish a systematic approach to planning and coordination.
5. Increase the capacity for homelessness prevention.
6. Engage the community in developing and implementing the above goals in ways that reflect the needs and concerns of community members, including neighborhoods, businesses, residents, the faith community, and others.

The council members say they're going to take it step-by-step; and if they meet their objective in five years, then they've done a good job.

The Big Bend Homeless Coalition is still finalizing the numbers from this year's Point-in-Time Survey, and say they expect to announce the results next week.

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  • by sid Location: tally on Mar 17, 2011 at 03:49 AM
    I seen a news report a fews years back that a TV station did and interveiw with a couple of these people ..They told about the money people came them and WOW ,,they were knoting down lots of money standing on the corners with signs ,,It was unreal at the amount they siad people gave them in a weeks time.. 90% are so sorry they would not work i a PIE factory with free eats ...They want their way of live and do not want any better ..
  • by Adkins Location: Leon County on Mar 16, 2011 at 06:19 PM
    I personally know of a " homeless" person. His wife works at a local hospital. He "earns" according to him 130 to 200 dollars each day panhandling. The live in a local motel at a cost of over 1000.00 per month rent. They receive free medical care by using the emergency room when the overdose from crack cocaine or get alcohol poisoning. HE even stepped in fron of a car at Walmart on Apalachee Parkway in order to get a settlement for the insurance company. ( HE received a check for 8,000. IT was pent in a week. He is not a unique case. While volunteering at the cold weather shelter...2 of the homeless guys were give 100 dollars each by someone for doing some work. They bragged to me that they hired a prostitute and rented a motel room. We can best help the homeless by not giving money to them directly when they are panhandling illegally. You are simply giving them Money to buy alcohol or drugs.
  • by tom Location: madison on Mar 16, 2011 at 06:09 PM
    Funny how anon blames high prices as a reason that people cannot afford houses......Congress has been doing everything in their power to prop up house prices.....who wins with high house prices, the banks, and who wins with low house prices.....the average middle class citizen. Tell Congress to let house prices fall and screw the banks....we need affordable housing...
  • by buagboo on Mar 16, 2011 at 04:56 PM
    get real, those guys with the signs that say "HUNGRY" are making loads of money, more than us unlucky stiffs are making in a day, and their take is tax free.
  • by old Joe Location: n. tally on Mar 16, 2011 at 04:50 PM
    about 75 % of these homeless people ,would not work in a pie factory ..I'm handicap ,,stop at the jr. store last week and a homesless(smoking a cig.) guy ask me for 2 dollars ..I told him I lived around the corner and had some yard work he could do for 8.00 an hours ,,,,he told me to go to hell,,,and I did not give him 2.00 dollars ..
  • by Anonymous on Mar 16, 2011 at 04:17 PM
    I thought the City put a plan into action a couple of years ago to end homelessness in Tallahassee. The real story here should be how their plan failed. We need to stop spending so much on homelessness. It will always be a problem and they will go wherever they can get fed and housed.
  • by anon Location: here on Mar 16, 2011 at 04:06 PM
    The only way to stop this problem (homelessness) is having decent paying jobs and affordable mortgages that the wage earners can pay to have a place to live.As long as all efforts are being made to increase benefits for business - this will not improve and could get worse. We will have to wait for the Legislature and Governor to finish before we see just how bad the future will look like for many.
  • by tom Location: madison on Mar 16, 2011 at 03:58 PM
    Let's pass a law that everyone has to have a house or they get fined or go to jail........seems pretty stupid unless you realize the Democrats just did the same thing with health insurance
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