The Rochester & Monroe County Continuum of Care is a program dedicated to ending homelessness in Monroe County. It is designed to promote community-wide planning and efficient use of resources at the local level. Continuum of Care conducts an annual survey, known as the Point in Time survey, to collect data regarding Rochester’s homeless population. The data collected are then presented to the Department of Housing and Urban Development in order to secure appropriate federal funding for our community.
During the survey, volunteers canvas Monroe County and count each and every homeless individual they encounter. As the volunteers conduct the count, they also try to provide the people and families that they meet with personal care items, blankets, gloves, socks, etc. This year, Frank Tiberio of Rochester Regional Health who works closely with the Continuum of Care, asked InterVol if we could donate a few items for the night of the survey.
We knew that our supporters would be able to make a world of difference in the lives of Rochester’s homeless population and in early January, we held a week-long donation drive for the needed items. Our supporters from all around Rochester stepped up to the plate and donated nearly 200 pounds of personal care items, blankets, and more. For reference, we only have 27.4 pounds of these items in our current inventory – our donors made quite the difference indeed!
The night of January 24th was a cold one – below freezing. The survey team braved the elements and set about taking their count & handing out the care packages made up entirely of donated items. The results of the survey are due out later this spring and will dictate the funding levels for Rochester area homeless programs in 2020. The Department of Housing and Urban Development recently released the 2019 funding allocations and thanks to the efforts of the Rochester & Monroe County Continuum of Care program, our area will receive over $9.5 million for programs that work to put an end to homelessness in our community.
In the meantime, there are still hundreds of homeless individuals and families here in our community. Thanks to the generous spirit of Rochestarians, we were able to provide our neighbors with things like toothbrushes, shampoo, tissues, blankets, socks, and gloves during this harsh January. We are so grateful to be able to help because of the continued support we receive from our community.