This month several organizations in Sooke will be participating in the 2018 Greater Victoria Point-in-Time Count, called “Everyone Counts.” The Point-in-Time Count (PiT Count) is a national strategy to determine the extent of both unsheltered and sheltered homelessness in a community during a single point in time, and will occur in communities across Canada. The PiT Count will take place in Greater Victoria, including Sooke, on Thursday, March 15, 2018.
This is the first time that Sooke will be actively participating in the PiT Count, so it is an important opportunity to gather evidence for the local needs so that individuals and families in Sooke can be better served.
Volunteers will be conducting surveys face-to-face with people on Thursday March 15th, between 10am and 1pm, at the Sooke Crisis & Referral Centre, the Sooke Food Bank as well as the Sooke Legion.
The PiT Count is chance to identify how many people are experiencing both unsheltered and sheltered homelessness at a given time. The PiT Count uses the widely-accepted definition of homelessness that includes unsheltered, or absolutely homelessness, which means living on the street, in parks, in makeshift shelters or sheds, in vehicles, or in abandoned buildings – but it also includes sheltered homelessness, including:
- Emergency sheltered – including those staying in overnight shelters, as well as those staying in domestic violence shelters/transition houses;
- Provisionally accommodated – which refers to accommodation that is temporary and without security of tenure, which includes transitional housing, hotels/motels, and also includes staying at someone else’s place (couch surfing).
The PiT Count will allow us to get a sense of who is experiencing homelessness, by collecting some demographic information, as well as barriers to housing the community and service needs of those experiencing homelessness. The data can be used to target community resources to where they are most needed.
The Capital Regional District (CRD) is the community entity responsible for the overall program, which is funded and mandated by the Homelessness Partnering Strategy of the Government of Canada. The PiT Count is being coordinated by the Community Social Planning Council of Greater Victoria (CSPC), and supported by the Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness.