Mitchell, SD is home to roughly 14,000 people. A point in time count concluded there were 16 homeless on January 27. Nine of them were children … in the winter.

Now, there are certainly more people in the area that need help. That one day count does not represent the help that is really needed. People with bachelor’s degrees are struggling to make ends meet! But, Mitchell doesn’t have the resources to help everyone. They don’t have their ducks in a proverbial row with a central point of contact, and they can’t afford to establish one without grant funding. But, without a central point of contact to collect data, they can’t secure a grant.

Funny how the system works, right?

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This is Bev Robinson, president of the Mitchell Area Networking Association.

In my opinion, people need to pool together to get the demographics needed to create a compelling case for a grant. It can’t be that difficult to get some forms made up. Then establish a point of contact that all who need help will be sent to first. Make sure that point of contact has numbers and addresses for all available resources (and hours). When someone comes for help, do a screening for eligibility, collect information, and store the data for future use. Only then will Mitchell truly know how many need help and what their needs actually are.

I went to the Ten-Year Plan to End Homelessness meeting in my hometown to report on the discussion.

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Here is my article: Mitchell needs funding for homeless

There are 14,000 people in this town. Why don’t we have enough people to help out? I could give you some reasons, but I am sure you can come up with your own. What a shame! We are all so damned busy in this world that we can’t even take time from out schedules to make sure kids have food to eat and a place to call home. And please don’t leave judgy comments. You don’t know where they have been, how they have to live, or how they were raised. The fact is, right now, that they need help.

Landlords are so preoccupied with money that they can’t provide housing for a decent price that people can actually afford. People don’t get paid much around here, and the prices of everything keep getting higher and higher. Something has to give.

If you see someone who has less than you, give what you can. Spare what you can. Go out of your way. Put the remote down and get out in your community and do something. And for the love of life, please don’t sit there and pray about it. Get up! Get out! Mingle with your people.

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