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Volunteers Needed for Registry Week
Rachel Reese | Apr 11, 2014

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When we talk to local nonprofit agencies we are consistently floored by the sheer numbers of clients they help here in our region. At the same time, we are astonished at the high levels of need that continue to exist throughout the region.

When it comes to homelessness specifically, the numbers are truly shocking. For example, according to the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness Annual Point in Time Count 2013, in the past three years the number of people living on the street statewide has increased 82%. Here in our region, the number of homeless people in Stamford/Greenwich has increased 45%. And on a single night in January 2013, more than 4500 people were homeless across Connecticut, including 475 families who were sleeping in emergency shelters, transitional housing and on the streets.

These numbers are pretty sobering but the good news is you can help. Local nonprofits are working hard to better assess the need in Fairfield County in order to deliver more efficient and effective services. One of the ways they’re doing this is with a weeklong initiative called Registry Week. It runs from April 28th to May 2nd. Chief Program Officer at Stamford-based Inspirica Noel Kammerman says it’s a critical effort.

"Registry Week is a week-long, grassroots effort to house the most vulnerable individuals experiencing homelessness,” said Kammerman. “Homeless individuals are identified and surveyed to determine what their vulnerabilities are, and how service providers can best serve them.”

There are two specific volunteer opportunities available. First – surveyors. These individuals will be trained to conduct one-on-one surveys with individuals experiencing homelessness in order to understand the challenges these individuals are facing and how they can be helped. Surveyors will be working in shelters and on streets.

Volunteers are also needed for data entry. These volunteers will collect the data gathered by the surveyors and input all of it into a massive database so that organizers and caseworkers can track the population efficiently and effectively throughout the region.

“The help of volunteers is critical,” said Kelly Leather, Director of Events, Communications and Volunteers at Inspirica. “Without dedicated volunteers we wouldn’t be able to interview single men, women and families who are homeless in our communities. We must gather vital data which will allow for homeless serving agencies like Inspirica to gain a better understanding of the needs of the homeless population.”  

To learn more about Inspirica and how you can get involved in Registry Week, visit their page on VolunteerSquare.com or click here.

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