Let’s all pitch in to make the community stronger

Next month, volunteers countywide will set about with the grim task of counting Kitsap County’s homeless. In the annual ritual, volunteers venture through wooded areas and other places the homeless are known to gather. Sponsored by the Kitsap County Continuum of Care Coalition, the count is mandated though the state’s Homelessness Housing and Assistance Act.

In 2009, there were 262 homeless youth in the county — some lived with family and friends, while some were living in tents, cars or were just out on the streets, according the coalition’s report.

An earnest effort put forth by the Kitsap Community Resources and the Kitsap County Personnel and Human Service is aiming to make those numbers fewer for this year’s count. The two are combining forces to open a temporary homeless shelter on Anderson Hill Road in Silverdale. Even in dismal economic times, it is nothing short of tragic that men, women and children are going without the basic necessities. That community resources and the county is undertaking a massive project to help a handful of people at a time is not only commendable, but it’s heartfelt.

Another organization, the nonprofit One-Church One-Family, also is pitching in by paying the utilities for the facility. There is still a laundry list of items needed for the facility. To help, give Che Che Murphy from the county’s Personnel and Human Services Department a call at (360) 337-7185. Local food banks, and nonprofits also need help. If you’re not in a position to help financially, give the contribution of time.

Being an active member in your community is the most valuable gift you can give or receive.

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