DALLAS — Last week’s Polk County Community Connect, an event with a goal to prevent homelessness, served more than 300 people in a four-hour span.
This year’s connect was held at Polk County Academy Building campus, putting it in close proximity to the Resource Center, Behavioral Health and Public Health departments, in addition to providing space for more than 60 organizations and agencies ready to help.
Family and Community Outreach Department director Brent DeMoe said, by the numbers, the event provided 30 dental screenings; six dental procedures; 22 immunizations; 23 flu shots; 10 HIV/Hep A screenings; 55 haircuts; 35 Oregon Health Plan applications; more than 30 housing applications; and served 1,160 street tacos.
For the past two years, the previous organizers made unsheltered homeless people the focus of the event. This year, the Family and Community Outreach Department took the reins and opened it to both the unsheltered homeless and those in danger of becoming homeless.
Having the connect event at the Academy Building allowed volunteers and organizers to sign people up for some assistance on the spot.
Amber Kozisek, a family resource navigator with the Family and Community Outreach department and a connect organizer, said the new location and format seemed to be a success.
“It seems to have worked really well,” she said. “We talked to all the providers and everybody is happy.”