The number of Veterans experiencing homelessness stayed relatively the same in both Denver and Colorado Springs from 2017 to 2018, even as Denver’s total homeless population increased and Colorado Springs’ decreased, according to the annual Point-in-Time (PIT) count.
At the end of January, Rocky Mountain Human Services (RMHS) Homes for All Veterans (HAV) teams in Denver and Colorado Springs participated in the PIT count, a coordinated, nationwide annual survey of people experiencing homelessness on one night of the year. On the night of January 29, trained volunteers and organizations went into the community to survey individuals, youth and families experiencing homelessness.
The PIT count survey results generate a snapshot of what homelessness looks like across Colorado. These results are then used to help raise public awareness and designate funding to organizations and their communities to support the collective goal of ending homelessness.
According to both counts, the number of Veterans experiencing homelessness fell only slightly by three individuals in Denver (566 total) and six individuals in Colorado Springs (192 total). The total number of people experiencing homelessness increased nearly 4 percent in Denver but declined nearly 26 percent in Colorado Springs.
People experiencing chronic homelessness in Denver increased drastically by 47 percent but declined by nearly 8 percent in Colorado Springs. Chronic homeless is defined as having been homeless for more than a year or at least four times in three years.
RMHS has been dedicated for several years to providing outreach, case management and support to Veterans experiencing homelessness. Through its HAV programs in both Denver and Colorado Springs, RMHS helps Veterans who are homeless or in danger of homelessness access the resources they need. The program serves more than 1,000 Veterans a year and is funded through a Veterans Affairs grant.
Three hundred volunteers in the seven-county Denver region and 180 volunteers in the Colorado Springs/El Paso County region participated in the PIT count.
The 2018 Point in Time Reports can be found here for the Denver Metro Area and here for Colorado Springs.