Temple: City forms taskforce, launches homeless count

The Temple Homeless Task Force has launched a two-week count of the city’s homeless residents.
The Temple Homeless Task Force has launched a two-week count of the city’s homeless residents.(Megan Vanselow)
Published: Oct. 20, 2020 at 7:28 PM CDT
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TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) – The Temple Homeless Task Force has launched a two-week count of the city’s homeless residents that will run through Nov. 30.

The count will supplement the point-in-time count by the Central Texas Homeless Coalition, which takes one day to count homeless across the county.

Instead the Temple Homeless Task Force and a dozen volunteers will spend more time looking for homeless.

“The two-week period…will give us time to collect everyone’s needs,” Kaye Cathy with Feed My Sheep said Tuesday.

She says the city has seen an increase in people who are homeless or on the verge of becoming homeless since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

“They’re living on the streets because they have no place to live they’ve lost their jobs,” Cathy said.

Volunteers will survey those with whom they come in contact to find out more about how they fell on hard times, what they need, and how the city can help.

Members of the task force say the goal is to address areas where people have fallen through the cracks.

“They need a way back and we want to listen to them,” Cathy said.

Some of their volunteers are very familiar with homelessness, such as Sean Anderson who still considers himself homeless.

“I’m giving back because I’ve been given a lot myself,” Anderson said.

He started volunteering with St. Vincent DePaul four years ago and has seen how great of an impact director Caitlyn West has had on the community.

West is the lead of the task force and has helped dozens out of homelessness.

“This survey will help them exponentially,” Anderson said.

“People just need to see (the homeless) as human beings because in the end that’s who they are.”

Those who participate in the survey get a voucher for clothing from St. Vincent DePaul.

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