SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Shelters of Saratoga has come up with many unique approaches to getting people off the streets like donation boxes. They’re now taking a new approach and it all starts with a survey.
As concerns grow over the homeless population in Saratoga, a local shelter says creating a registry of those living on the streets may be a solution.
“We all talk about the homeless, but who are the homeless in our city,” Registry coordinator Paula Tancredi said.
Tancredi says over the last two and a half weeks, Shelters of Saratoga has collected 52 names on their new homeless registry. The confidential list is only shared with other outreach and service programs in our area.
“Part of the goal of the ‘by name list’ is to find out what service gaps we have and to try and fill those service gaps and on top of it, to match people with the services that we do have,” Tancredi said.
The process begins with a simple survey offered to people on the streets. They fill out a questionnaire pinpointing their individual needs.
“Yeah I think it’s a good idea,” Nathan Suprenant said.
Suprenant has been in and out of homelessness for the past four years. He says he hopes the registry helps people like him get back on their feet.
“They just had better programs out there that we can utilize for a better purpose,” Suprenant said.
What about those who have concerns about the registry?
“Not everybody’s thrilled with the concept of being stereotyped into this homeless group,” Tancredi said. “… First of all it’s completely voluntary so if you don’t want to participate you don’t participate.”
Reps with the shelter say they plan on sharing service needs they learned from the survey with the community at a public meeting next month.