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Volunteers Needed for 2013 Homeless Count

Hundreds of volunteers will fan out across San Mateo County and drive or walk through every census tract, taking note of the number of homeless people.

San Mateo County officials are looking for volunteers to participate in a biennial census of homeless people living in the county.

The 2013 Homeless One-Day Count is scheduled to take place on Jan. 24 between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m., according to the San Mateo County Human Services Agency.

Hundreds of volunteers will fan out across the county and drive or walk through every census tract, taking note of the number of homeless individuals, families and encampments that are seen.

The results of the count provide valuable data for policymakers and organizations that provide services and develop programs for homeless residents of San Mateo County, according to the Human Services Agency.

Volunteer counters are needed to make the event a success, organizers said.

The volunteers, who do not interact with the homeless people they encounter, must be at least 18 years old and can be individuals or groups.

There are a number of volunteer training sessions scheduled over the next two weeks, including two today in San Mateo and South San Francisco.

Anyone wishing to participate can sign up online at www.smchsa.eventbrite.com.

In 2011, 2,149 homeless residents were tallied, according to census results.

— Bay City News

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