2013-01-24 / News

Campaign aids area residents

Homelessness target of state, local agencies

MANISTIQUE – As part of the state-wide Campaign to End Homelessness, area agencies are providing alternative options for individuals and families faced with homelessness, especially during the winter months.

“Having a place to live can be a life-or-death matter. No one should be living in a car or under a bridge,” said Nancy Demers, coordinator for the Schoolcraft County Coalition for Safe and Stable Housing. The coalition coordinates services to people who are homeless or near-homeless in Schoolcraft County.

“Our community has programs to help, but people often aren’t sure how to find them,” she added.

People facing housing crises are advised to contact the Manistique Housing Commission at (906) 341-5451. From there, individuals will be referred to the proper resources.

According to Demers, over 94,000 Michigan residents were homeless at some time during 2011. In addition, more than half of the Michigan residents who are homeless are families, including thousands of children. The average age of a homeless child is seven years old.

The Campaign to End Homelessness is a public-private partnership working to end homelessness in Michigan. The state is divided into 63 “Continuum of Care” areas and each has created a 10-year plan to end homelessness in that part of the state.

The campaign focuses its efforts on preventing homelessness, or rapidly finding stable housing for people and then addressing the underlying problems, including unemployment, a medical crisis, mental illness, addiction, or domestic violence.

For more information about Michigan’s Campaign to End Homelessness, visit www.The- CampaignToEndHomelessness.org.

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