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Missoula's Homesless

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Submitted By taylirfair
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Homelessness in Missoula, Mt has been a tremendous issue the community is trying very hard to eliminate. An interesting fact people do not know, is that the people out on the streets downtown and around the city, only make up eleven percent of the homelessness in our town. Those are not the only people struggling with life. Families make up most homeless in Missoula area. An article from the Missoulian, claims “forty-six percent of the homeless in the past three years have completed at least some college, many work, and have families.” Missoula has the largest population of homeless families, according to the 2010 Montana Homeless Survey. There is a rough estimate of at least two-hundred people who are homeless in Missoula, there are of course, the visible homeless but twenty-five percent of the homeless, the “chronically” homeless that seemed to be overlooked by the community. As I stated above most are families in which have children in them, who are trying to provide for them and give them a normal life. These children attend public school but for them they never know where they will be sleeping at night once they leave school. Missoula schools have reported a big increase in hungry, homeless students. Across Missoula county, and the state, the number of children who rely on school just for food is depressingly big, and getting bigger. Trish Kirschten, a title one administrator with Missoula County Public Schools states, “I think it took a longer time to hit Missoula, and now we’re really starting to see the repercussions of it.” Most students attending public schools can receive food to go home with them to their families, in which may or may not last them the weekend. One survey really stood out to me, a cafeteria sold 4,202 lunches, more than half were given out for free or at reduced prices. Out of the 2,218 breakfasts sold, a full seventy-five percent were free or at reduced prices for the children of that school. Valerie Addis, the supervisor for food and nutrition services at MCPS says, “It’s the biggest demographic change I’ve seen in my entire life, and I’ve been doing this for 33 years.”…...

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