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Ellis County Homeless Coalition hosts “Lunch & Learn”

Patty Hullett
The Daily Light
SAGU student volunteers help prepare lunch.

The Ellis County Homeless Coalition, in partnership with Texas Business Incentive Services, hosted a membership luncheon at the Waxahachie Bible Church on Friday, Sept. 25. This informational event was considered a “Lunch and Learn” experience for some of the homeless folks in the Ellis County area, as well as for future perspective contributors to the organization.

The primary purpose of this meeting was to discuss “How to Make Homelessness a Rarity and Affordable Housing a Reality in Ellis County”. The Coalition is part of the Texas Homeless Network (thn.org). The non-profit membership-based organization works to end homelessness in Texas by collaborating with all communities, large and small, across the state to build systems and strategic plans to achieve this goal. Some of the following topics were brought-up and discussed at the luncheon:

1) Economists with Columbia University predict homelessness could increase 40 to 45 percent due to unemployment this year.

2) A large portion of households live paycheck-to-paycheck and are only one paycheck away from becoming homeless.

3) Due to COVID, the expected number of U.S. evictions by the end of the year are between 30 and 40 million, according to THN reports.

4) Not providing rental relief and assistance residents need to avoid homelessness, will create an even greater long-term financial impact on our community.

5) A total of 435 Ellis County students were classified as “homeless” in our 11 school districts as of Jan. 29.

6) As of the January 2020 Point-in-Time Count, 74 people were found to be experiencing homelessness in Ellis County.

7) As of June 2020, Ellis County Homeless Coalition found 70 families throughout Ellis County living week-to-week in hotels/motels.

8) People working in soft skill labor jobs have to live outside of our cities, due to the unavailability of affordable housing.

For more information on how to get involved, please contact the Coalition by email at info@elliscountyhomeless.com or phone at 469-428-7320. To reach Chairman James Bell, his contact info is: 214-228-4280 / james@elliscountyhomeless.com.

The Ellis County Homeless Coalition hosted a membership luncheon at the Waxahachie Bible Church on Friday, Sept. 25.