Volunteers out surveying homeless in Hillsborough - WFLA News Channel 8

Volunteers out surveying homeless in Hillsborough

Posted: Updated:
Volunteers wearing these t-shirts will count the homeless Thursday Volunteers wearing these t-shirts will count the homeless Thursday
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

Volunteers are scouring streets, alleys, and woods looking for people who don't have homes.

About 300 volunteers will take part in the one-day homeless survey in Hillsborough County. Many of them gathered early Thursday morning at eight different deployment sites to pick up their surveys and bright yellow T-shirts.

"These are individual people. Each has its own story, usually a very compelling story and they need help," explained Maria Barcus, CEO of the new Tampa Hillsborough Homeless Initiative.

Starting this year, the survey will be completed annually instead of every two years to try to get a better grasp on exactly who needs help.

Barcus says Hillsborough County would like to mirror what's happening in St. Louis, Missouri where a 10-year plan has resulted in more funding and a huge reduction in the chronic homeless population. She recently visited there with other county leaders.

"We saw close coordination between the local government and the state government, which is something that we're working on that we want to achieve," she explained. "They have more HUD funding and they have a dedicated source of funds that generates about $5 million per year. So just their ongoing funding is three times what ours is."

Barcus calls the data that will be collected Thursday "a baseline" for a new homeless strategy that's being developed. The action plan will be released in March.

2,275 homeless were counted on the streets of Hillsborough County in 2013. County leaders say the real number is far higher and there aren't enough beds for everyone who needs them.

  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • FL vehicle registration renewal fees drop

    FL vehicle registration renewal fees drop

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:48 AM EDT2014-09-01 15:48:49 GMT
    That little gift you get from the state on your birthday every year, to renew your car tag, is going to be cheaper starting Monday.  The cut will save drivers about $13 to $25 depending on the size of their vehicle.
    That little gift you get from the state on your birthday every year, to renew your car tag, is going to be cheaper starting Monday.  The cut will save drivers about $13 to $25 depending on the size of their vehicle.
  • Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:48 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:48:06 GMT
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
  • Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:03 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:03:34 GMT
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
  • NewsMore>>

  • Bubba 'The Love Sponge' to announce new Tampa gig

    Bubba 'The Love Sponge' to announce new Tampa gig

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:09 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:09:07 GMT
    File photo of Bubba the Love Sponge ClemFile photo of Bubba the Love Sponge Clem
    Bubba "The Love Sponge" announced on his Twitter page Monday that he will soon have a new Tampa home.
    Bubba "The Love Sponge" announced on his Twitter page Monday that he will soon have a new Tampa home.
  • St. Petersburg plane pulled from Tampa Bay after Sunday crash

    St. Petersburg plane pulled from Tampa Bay after Sunday crash

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:08 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:08:34 GMT
    The plane that crashed in Tampa Bay, off the coast of St. Petersburg Sunday,has been recovered.A recovery team started work early this morning. It took hours to bring the plane up from about 25 feet under water. The company that owns the plane, Aerial Banner, Inc., sent company representatives to St. Petersburg.
    The plane that crashed in Tampa Bay, off the coast of St. Petersburg Sunday,has been recovered.A recovery team started work early this morning. It took hours to bring the plane up from about 25 feet under water. The company that owns the plane, Aerial Banner, Inc., sent company representatives to St. Petersburg.
  • Scott and Crist bash each other at campaign events

    Scott and Crist bash each other at campaign events

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:02 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:02:31 GMT
    Florida's increasingly bitter and expensive campaign for governor is kicking into gear with two months left before Election Day.Gov. Rick Scott began a two-week bus tour along the crucial Interstate 4 corridor, where he railed against former Gov. Charlie Crist as someone who is just like President Barack Obama.
    Florida's increasingly bitter and expensive campaign for governor is kicking into gear with two months left before Election Day.Gov. Rick Scott began a two-week bus tour along the crucial Interstate 4 corridor, where he railed against former Gov. Charlie Crist as someone who is just like President Barack Obama.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.