Homelessness doesn’t have a certain look. You may or may not notice the men, women and children who are struggling with homelessness. They may be sleeping in their car, or on a friend’s couch. Perhaps they’re living temporarily with their parents, or in a motel room. Maybe they’ve found emergency shelter.

In Raleigh and Wake County, homelessness is increasing 8% each year. With over 6,000 individuals seeking homeless services, 70% of those are considered homeless due to a recent situation in their lives.

Homelessness doesn’t just happen. There are underlying causes. Many who are homeless have experienced trauma, domestic violence, family tragedy, job loss, addiction or health issues. Read more about the ongoing affects of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and how they relate to homelessness.

Individuals Homeless
Over
6,000
Individuals Homeless
Seeking Services
Children Homeless
Over
4,300
Children Homeless
Attending Wake Schools
Individuals in Poverty
Over
99,400
Individuals in Poverty
at risk of being homeless

Homelessness in Raleigh and Wake County is rising. As Raleigh and surrounding towns are experiencing prosperity, this growth has driven up housing costs, and it’s estimated that we are losing between 400 and 550 affordable housing units every year. About one-fourth of households in our area are spending more than they can afford for housing, and some reports predict that the number of low-income families who need affordable housing is expected to rise by up to 3,700 per year. Single mothers with children represent more than half of those needing access to affordable housing.

Homelessness among Wake County Public School students is rising significantly. According to recent data from the Wake County Public School System, the number of homeless children and youth in our school system has increased a mind-numbing 56 percent in the past seven years. Additionally, the numbers are increasing more rapidly – a whopping 27 percent in the past two years.

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