A night out in the cold: Volunteering for the 2019 Point-in-Time Homeless Count

The Point-in-Time Count of Homeless Persons, a census held annually in cities nationwide since 2005, is organized in Chicago by the Department of Family and Support Services, and is meant to understand the homeless population in the city during a few hours on one given night in January. The data is used to guide federal funding, homeless services and resource planning, but it is far from comprehensive.

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Hamilton House creates a new kind of family in Chicago’s South Shore community

Since the mid-1970s, Gerald Hamilton, a retired homicide detective, has been a foster parent for over 100 kids and teenagers of different ethnicities and backgrounds, most of them young men. Some people assume that foster parents are in it for the money or don’t know how to deal with the often troubling behavior of the children they take in. Hamilton challenges these misconceptions by intentionally seeking out kids who need more support and treating them no differently than his biological children.

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For a Bright Orange Tent: How one practical survival item caused the rise and fall of Chicago’s Tent City

Residents of Uptown Tent City had two things that made them different from the city’s larger homeless population: They had bright orange tents, and they knew their rights. Those two things became their undoing.

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