Sedgwick County’s annual homeless count to be conducted Thursday

The annual homeless count for Sedgwick County will be conducted Thursday, including an opportunity for the homeless to receive some goods and services at Century II.

A coalition of community organization headed by the United Way of the Plains will conduct a street outreach to count the homeless from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. That team will go to places where the homeless congregate, such as under bridges.

As part of the count, the homeless are encouraged to come to the Expo Hall at Century II between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. where they will be able to receive flu shots, haircuts and socks and get information about housing and benefits.

The count is done to determine the size and scope of the homeless problem, so better planning can be done, according to the United Way of the Plains.

The federal government requires communities to do a count every other year. Sedgwick County has conducted a count six of the last seven years so local officials can get a better grasp of the trend, said Delane Butler, spokesman for United Way of the Plains.