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Data Counts: 2011 Point in Time Count in the news! January 28, 2011

Posted by abhomeless in Data, Social Media.
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Our annual Point in Time Count took place on January 26, 2011 and it was featured on WLOS! Check out the story by clicking the link below!

Asheville. NC :: Absolute Le – Homelessness By The Numbers.

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Homeless dialogue based on The Soloist November 17, 2010

Posted by abhomeless in Events.
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2010's National Homelessness and Hunger Awareness Week is November 14-20. As part of the scheduled events, participants attended a discussion at Malaprop's Bookstore and Cafe about the book The Soloist by Steve Lopez.

More than 10 agency representatives, community members and people experiencing homelessness came out for the community book discussion based on The Soloist by Steve Lopez at Malaprop’s Bookstore and Café on November 16, 2010.

The book discussion was held as part of the scheduled events for National Homelessness and Hunger Awareness Week (November 14-20). The week is designed to raise awareness of homelessness in order to dispel myths that homelessness is someone else’s problem and to help people learn about how to join in the community’s work to end homelessness.

The Soloist is a book about a journalist who meets a talented musician who is experiencing homelessness, the relationship they form and the challenges they face as the musician struggles to find and maintain housing. By reading a common book, everyone had a similar framework with which to begin a conversation about homelessness and hunger. We couldn’t have been more pleased at how this worked out! The conversation began around some of the themes of The Soloist and quickly turned into a remarkable exchange of ideas, stories and experiences.

Ending homelessness is a collaborative effort and events like the book discussion promote community-wide dialogue, create approaches and vital insights from a diverse group of people.

During the book discussion, many participants expressed the need for more one-on-one interactions between people from all walks of life as a way to minimize isolation and mistrust and create more comprehensive, effective responses. This need has also been a topic at the Homeless Initiative as we try to find creative ways to bring people together to develop networks of support and action that alleviate the impact homelessness has on everyone in the community.

Recently we’ve explored using social media as a tool to bridge communication gaps. Participants in the discussion suggested that social media could be used to share the stories and experiences of people experiencing homelessness to a much wider audience and, by doing so, help to combat the many myths that surround homelessness and set the stage for a more comprehensive and productive dialogue about how we can end homelessness.

National Homelessness and Hunger Awareness Week isn’t over yet! UNCA is holding a food drive all this week to benefit the Family Resource Center at Emma and tomorrow at 7pm in the UNCA Humanities Lecture Hall is a FREE screening of The Soloist. Hope to see you all there!

The Homeless Initiative cannot do what we do without your participation and input. If you have an idea for an event, how to get people involved or if you want to learn more generally, please contact us. We love hearing from you! You can also learn more about the going’s on at the Homeless Initiative by checking out our Facebook page.

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