2018 Malibu Homeless Count Needs Volunteers

A homeless man sits on a bench at the Malibu Colony Plaza.

Volunteers behind Malibu’s fourth annual Homeless Count are looking for 60 local volunteers to help count the number of homeless people in Malibu. This year’s count, which is done in coordination with the LA County Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA), will take place Thursday, Jan. 25 from 6-8 a.m. Volunteers will meet up at Our Lady of Malibu Church (3625 Winter Canyon Road).

Volunteers will be assigned to work in groups of two or three, with each group covering an assigned geographic area in Malibu. They are asked not to approach the tents, cars, vans and RVs in which homeless people are living and sleeping when doing the count. Counts will be taken on foot in some areas and from vehicles in other areas.

“They’re visual counts using our own judgment as to who looks homeless,” volunteer Jay Scott said. “There are no conversations with people.” 

Because some of the terrain in Malibu is difficult to access, volunteer Bianca Torrence also enlists the help of the local sheriff’s department and National Park Service. 

“The sheriffs have been great and very helpful,” she said. “Prior to the count, we have a meeting scheduled with them, LAHSA and Susan Dueñas, the city’s public safety manager, so we can strategically plan and go over the map and the areas in Malibu.” This meeting will take place at the Malibu Public Library on Jan. 4 at 2 p.m.

The Malibu count is part of a national effort by the U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) during the last week of January to count the homeless in every community. The information is used to pinpoint areas most in need of social services and funding for shelter and housing.

For more information on the Malibu count, and to RSVP, go to: theycountwillyou.org/malibu18.