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Anchor House Participates in Point-in-Time Count

Annual Point-in-Time Count is a statewide initiative to prevent and end homelessness.

Mercer County’s Point-in-Time Count is part of a Statewide Annual Initiative to Prevent and End Homelessness.

On January 24, Anchor House participated with community partners and volunteers in the Annual Point-in-Time Count (PIT) which provides a snapshot of the population experiencing homelessness in communities like Mercer County on a single night.

Our team distributed care bags with hygiene items, snacks and cards of encouragement to those they met on the streets during the PIT Count. Last year, the PIT Count showed that there was a 34% increase in homelessness between 2022 and 2023 in Mercer County; 28% of those who were homeless were children under 18 and 6.2% were youth between 18 and 24.

Data collected from the PIT Count, which occurs every January, demonstrates why programming including our Shelter and other Safe Housing initiatives are needed in our community.

The Mercer County PIT is part of a statewide snapshot of individuals and households experiencing homelessness in our communities including where they find shelter, what their needs are and what factors have contributed to them becoming homeless. The 2023 NJ Counts showed an increase in the population of people who are homeless by 10,000 – the highest it had been since 2015.

The PIT Counts do not occur just in New Jersey – it is a nationwide effort. The findings from the PIT Count about families and individuals, including youth, who are experiencing homelessness help government entities, including Congress, to better allocate housing resources and services to prevent and end homelessness.

The PIT also helps agencies like Anchor House and our other community partners identify where the greatest needs are. Based on the PIT numbers, the biggest need for Anchor House’s services continues to be Trenton. However, the number of youth experiencing homelessness in other townships in Mercer County like Ewing and Hamilton has risen in recent years.

This uptick in these communities is also reflected in the increase of youth at our Shelter and other programs from these municipalities. It is another reason why our Street Outreach Program is needed not just in Trenton but throughout Mercer County to be able to connect youth with needed services and resources in our community.

Read the full 2023 PIT Report for Mercer County, as published by Monarch Housing