Beginning Thursday, January 23, Bell County will start a 24-hour count of the area's homeless population, a government requirement if the county hopes to get grants to help them.

According to the Temple Daily Telegram, the count will center around known locations where the homeless live and congregate.  The counting includes the sheltered and unsheltered homeless; those in temporary facilities and those living in cars, on the streets, in parks and other public places.  It will also include those at risk of being homeless.  School Districts will help too, collecting data on student grades, gender and nighttime living arrangements.

If you would like to help count contact

The Department of Housing uses the data to award grants for homeless initiatives.