Where are You Sleeping Tonight?
Today’s forecast calls for fog with a high of 41 and a low of 36. There’s a low chance of precipitation but since this is the Pacific Northwest, you just never know when the rain is coming. And for those who have to sleep outside tonight, that could mean need to find materials for a shelter or a protective doorway. Those in temporary or emergency housing will have a bed for a short time but will have to prepare for wetter (and colder) weekend when they might not have a solid roof.
Tonight is Portland’s biennial count of both unsheltered people along with those in temporary or emergency shelter. In 2009, nearly 1,600 people slept outside on a January night while another 820 were in temporary shelter. While that number might seem small, it is only a estimate of how many people, both youth and adults, lack stable and safe housing.
At p:ear, we’ll be counting the youth who plan to sleep outside tonight and those who might be lucky to sleep inside tonight. And while we hope that the 2011 numbers will be lower than those in 2007 and 2009, the count serves as a reminder of the need for services helping people – and our young – have safe places to sleep at night. Please consider gift to p:ear and our transitional housing program to continue helping youth transition off the street into safe and permanent housing.