Thursday, June 21, 2007

Volunteers Needed to Help the Homeless

LAS VEGAS — Volunteers are needed to help with homeless outreach on Nov. 6 at Project Homeless Connect, an event formerly known as Stand Down for the Homeless.

The 15th Annual event, to be held at Cashman Center, 850 Las Vegas Blvd. North, helps thousands of homeless people each year receive needed services, such as food, clothing, grooming, housing, transportation, job training, health care, substance abuse treatment, child care and veterans and legal services. Staffed by volunteers from local governments, charities, shelters, businesses and others interested in ending and preventing homelessness, the event is coordinated by the Nevada Homeless Alliance (NHA) and is co-sponsored by the city of Las Vegas.

"Project Homeless Connect is an important part of our regional Help Hope Home initiative to help homeless people get off the streets," said Shannon West, regional homeless services coordinator. "The idea is to bring the community together to give people the help, hope and housing that they need to get them off the street."

Participants include Clark County Social Service, City of Las Vegas, city and county courts, emergency shelter and housing providers, Nevada Health Centers, Lutheran Social Services of Nevada, employment and training agencies, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department HELP (Homeless Evaluation Liaison Project) Team, street outreach service providers, state welfare and mental health agencies, the Veterans Administration, and faith-based groups.

Homelessness continues to be a serious problem in Southern Nevada, where a census indicates there are an average of 11,369 homeless people staying in shelters or on the street at any given time. This event provides valuable resources and assistance in helping get homeless people off the streets and on the road to independence.

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