The Weld County Homeless Coalition is a collaboration of community resources dedicated to making homelessness in Weld County rare, short-lived and non-recurring.
In fall 2011 an increase of shelter requests prompted Greeley-area shelters and other community agencies to recognize the need for a seasonal cold weather shelter. The collaboration provided for emergency shelters at Salvation Army and other locations for the winter. The cold weather shelter was a helpful resource, providing 694 nights of shelter to 57 unduplicated people. The cold weather shelter committee of agencies convened again in preparation for the 2012-13 winter, realizing a more sustainable solution is needed. This discussion gave birth to what is now known as the Weld County Homeless Coalition.
Every year, a federally mandated Homeless Point-in-Time Count is conducted. A count of all of the individuals staying in shelters is conducted every year. Every other year, in addition to the sheltered count, an unsheltered count of individuals and families experiencing homelessness is conducted. In January 2015 there was a combined (sheltered and unsheltered) total of 257 individuals experiencing homelessness in Weld County. 78 were children under the age of 18, 22 were youth between the ages of 18-24, and 157 were adults aged 25 and over.
To date, much of the work of the Homeless Coalition has been achieved through quarterly public informational meetings and occasional small groups focused on specific needs/tasks. This has led to concrete work itself and also increased coordination amongst agencies serving people who are homeless. Four populations of people experiencing homelessness have been identified as areas of focus for the Weld County Homeless Coalition: Households (Families), Individuals (Chronic), Veterans, and Youth. The coalition is currently developing a strategic plan that describes the nature, work, outcomes, and goals of a continuum of care in Weld County for those experiencing homelessness.
Members of the Weld County Homeless Coalition have also been representing the needs of Weld County’s homeless families and individuals in the North Front Range Continuum of Care (NFRCC), a collaboration of homeless and at-risk serving agencies in both Larimer and Weld counties. This collaboration of agencies between the two counties has helped to make our response to homelessness more coordinated and proactive.