Messaging and Quotes Can Help NJCounts 2017 End Homelessness
On January 4, 2016, Monarch Housing Associates hosted a webinar “NJCounts 2017 Press Contact Webinar.” The contact people that will be working with the press during NJCounts 2017 in each community joined the call.
In New Jersey, the annual Point in Time count of individuals and families experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless is called NJCounts.
NJCounts 2017 will take place on Wednesday, January 25, 2017. The annual count takes place during the last 10 days of January in accordance with requirements from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The goal of the webinar was to help local communities plan their local outreach to and communication with the press. The material shared through the webinar will be useful to any and all people working with the press before, during and after NJCounts 2017.
NJ Counts 2017 provides us all with the opportunity to engage with the press through both more traditional press materials and through social media. We can share with the press both the need around homelessness and the hard work being done to end homelessness in communities across New Jersey.
The webinar focused on how to prepare to work with the press around your local NJCounts 2017 point in time count of the homeless, how to prepare consumers and staff to talk with the press, and how to tailor sample press materials for your own media outreach.
A key message of this year’s webinar is how instrumental social media can be in working with the press.
Everyone working with the press can share the hashtag, #NJCounts 2017 when posting photos and videos on Facebook and Twitter and then encourage others to like, share, and/or retweet their posts.
Using social medial allows local communities to do their own “public relations” work about their local NJCounts, why they are conducting the count and how it is helping the work to end homelessness in their community.
NJCounts 2016 found 8,941 homeless men, women and children who were counted across the state of New Jersey on the night of the Point-in-Time Count.
This was an overall decrease of 1,270 persons, or 12.4%, compared to the 2015 count.
- 1,425 persons, in 1,249 households, were identified as chronically homeless, a decrease of 74 persons, or 4.9%, compared to the 2014.
- 1,442 persons were un-sheltered; up 48% from the 974 persons counted in 2015.