MTPR

Homelessness

This Saturday, athletes from Billings’ three public high schools will work together to raise money and awareness for a group of their fellow students.

Young people who’ve experienced homelessness in Montana feel like they often fall through the cracks of programs designed to help kids fleeing abusive homes or needing a place to stay. Stock photo.
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Young people who’ve experienced homelessness in Montana feel like they often fall through the cracks of programs designed to help kids fleeing abusive homes or needing a place to stay.

"I didn’t have any support or anybody to turn to when I was homeless, so that was a big struggle."

Chronic Homelessness by Region in Montana.
Courtesy Missoula Housing Authority

The first ever statewide conference on homelessness is happening in Helena today and tomorrow. More than 75 organizations from across Montana are meeting.

Jim McGrath, with the Missoula Housing Authority presented a graph showing some positive trend data about the number of homeless people here since 2005.

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Friday is the winter solstice, marking the first day of winter and the longest night of the year. In communities across Montana, there’s also a tradition of honoring homeless persons who have died on the solstice.

Mara Hanks

A nonprofit in Kalispell is trying to get a hundred people to sleep outside Saturday to raise money and awareness about youth homelessness.

United Way of Missoula County CEO, Susan Hay Patrick.
Edward O'Brien

Dozens of homeless Missoulians are now pre-qualified for a federal rental assistance program. The problem is, there’s a dearth of available rentals in Missoula’s red-hot housing market.

Single mom Julie Barrett and her three kids were very familiar with the problem. They were homeless for over a year. That changed in December after Barrett enrolled her family in what’s called a Shelter Plus Care rental voucher. That decision landed the Barrett’s a new rental home this past December.

theHRDC.org / theHRDC.org

In recent years, Montana’s fastest-growing city, Bozeman, has also seen a rise in the number of people who are homeless. Expensive housing and stagnant wages may be to blame.

Some of the coldest temperatures of this already bitterly cold week are forecast over the next 12 to 24 hours. Homeless shelters are trying to help Montana’s most vulnerable during this weather emergency.

Lack Of State Housing Funding Puts Montana In Crisis

May 12, 2016
Homeless man sits in the riverside park in Missoula
Claire Burgeson

A recent survey revealed some surprising opinions among Montanans. Professor Christopher Muste helped conduct the survey for the University of Montana and Stanford University.

“What we found is that a large majority, almost three-quarters of Montana, were willing to have the government spend more money specifically for low-income housing and for housing for homeless people.”

Hundreds of people who are homeless or at risk to be got help today in Missoula at the annual Project Homeless Connect event, where they were offered a variety of free services.

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