BELTON, Texas (FOX 44) — The 2023 Point-In-Time Count is an assessment that measures how many people are experiencing homelessness on a single day here in Central Texas.

Today, volunteers gathered to make sandwiches and fill thank you gift bags with supplies and other foods you can eat without heat sources, for P.I.T Participants to give to the individuals experiencing homelessness that they will speak with tomorrow.

P.I.T Volunteers

For many of the volunteers like Director of Hilltop Recovery Ministries Tanya Roper, this initiative is a personal one.

“It really shows the barriers that our individuals are facing each day, that they are experiencing homelessness and being invited into their home, because that’s essentially what we’re doing, is a really special thing,” shares Roper.

Starting at 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, members of the Central Texas community will partake in an initiative that leaders have been training and planning for months. Surveying the communities most vulnerable citizens who are in need of support.

Central Texas Homeless Coalition Chairperson Bobby Ehrig, shares why it is important to ensure that the need for each community is properly represented.

“The goal is to try and engage as many homeless individuals as we can. And then we conduct a brief survey. A lot of governments rely on that report, which comes out annually in order to decide where they’re going to allocate funds, where they’re going to create new programs,” says Ehrig.

With this survey, the City of Killeen and Temple will develop a homeless and mental health strategic plan for the region, getting assistance in creating new programs and resources for those in need.

“It gives us an opportunity to really understand what the individuals are facing in each community because each community is so different and what they need or how we can assist. And so this is really a great thing that’s done,” shares Tanya Roper.

The work to end homelessness is ongoing but there are many ways that you can get involved in your community to make a difference.

You can visit here for information on how you can get involved.