CARROLL COUNTY, MD ( September 27, 2012): On October 6, 2012, from 930 a.m. until 3:30 p.m., the Carroll County Department of Social Services along with75 service providers and 160 volunteers will host the second annual Homeless Resource Day at Winters Mill High School. Volunteers—McDaniel’s College ROTC and MSW students, local law enforcement organizations, and private citizens—act as navigators assisting participants to access various resources.

Homeless Resource Day is a statewide initiative that provides one stop preventative and direct services to citizens who are homeless or in danger of becoming homeless. Last year, over 200 Carroll County residents were assisted either obtaining photo identification cards, medical and dental screenings, blood pressure and eye exams, pro bono legal assistance, housing information, veteran administration assistance, and employment services.

“The face of the homeless has changed and this population is often invisible because they look like us, families with children, individuals and the elderly,” said Frank Valenti, Director of the Carroll County Department of Social Services. “Veterans are a fast-growing segment of the homeless population. They frequently experience economic and emotional difficulty re-entering the community. The down-turn in the economy also has impacted families with children who find themselves in crisis because of unemployment home foreclosure or a catastrophic health event.” According to the Homeless Prevention Program — which is administered by DHR’s Office of Grants Management — a person is most likely to become homeless when: they lack access to affordable housing; they suffer from mental illness or addiction; they experience domestic violence; they lack the skills and training necessary to secure a living wage; and they lack the support of family and friends.

Last year, the Carroll County Department of Social Services and its community partners provided homeless services to over 400 Carroll County residents. At the end of the 2013 fiscal year, the following preventative services were provided to Carroll County residents—food assistance (4,500), energy assistance (over 801 applications), and cash assistance (over 250 households). There are several shelters in the county with a total nightly capacity of 143 beds.

A free shuttle service—beginning at 9:30 a.m. and departing from eight locations throughout the county—will be offered to assist homeless individuals to attend the event.

Shuttle Pick-up & Drop-off sites include:

Westminster – Distillery Bldg., Shelters, Carroll Health Department, and

Westminster Elementary School

Taneytown –Shopping Center

Sykesville –Wal-Mart Parking Lot

Manchester – Manchester Elementary School

Hampstead –North Carroll High School

New Windsor – Middle School

Union Bridge – Elmer Wolfe Elementary School

The Carroll County Department of Social services is a field office of The Maryland Department of Human Resources (DHR), the state’s primary social service provider, serving over one million people annually. The Department, through its 24 local departments of social services, aggressively pursues opportunities to assist people in economic need, provide preventive services and protect vulnerable children and adults in each of Maryland’s 24 counties.


Filed in: Carroll County, DHS News

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