The number of people experiencing homelessness
at any given time in Florida.
The Sunshine State has the third largest
homeless population in the USA.

(National Alliance End Homelessness)

The 4 W's of Homelessness


is homeless?

  • Single Adults

  • Victims of Domestic Violence

  • People of Color

  • Elderly Adults

  • Individuals with Serious Mental Health Disorders and/or Physical Disabilities

  • Individuals Who Identify as Transgender

  • Military Veterans

(National Alliance to End Homelessness)


is homelessness?

Homelessness can mean spending a night “sheltered” or “unsheltered.” 

  • “Sheltered” homelessness can mean an individual or family is living in a shelter, motel, hotel, or transitional housing. It can also mean an individual or family is temporarily living with a friend or relative. This is often known as “doubling up” because there is not adequate space.

  • “Unsheltered” homelessness can mean an individual or family is literally sleeping in the open, like on a sidewalk, alley, or park bench. It can likewise mean sleeping in a tent, automobile, or condemned/abandoned building. 

(Florida Department of Children and Families)


is someone

considered homeless?

  • There is a lack of “fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.”

  • They “will imminently lose housing.” (Eviction)

  • They are “consistently unstably housed” and are “likely to continue in that state.”

  • They are “fleeing or attempting to flee domestic or intimate violence.”

(Florida Department of Children and Families, The HEARTH Act)


are people homeless?

  • A significant medical crisis that leads to debt and/or job loss.

  • Fleeing domestic violence.

  • A lack of affordable housing.

  • Experiencing a job loss or working a low-income job.

  • Living with addiction and/or not being able to access sufficient support services. 

(National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty)


The number of children enrolled in 2017-2018
in public schools across Florida who were homeless
for some part of the academic year.

(Florida Coalition to End Homelessness, United States Interagency Council on Homelessness)

2,933 were unsheltered.
7,839 were unaccompanied by an adult guardian.

Food insecurity

Food Insecurity is defined as “a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life.” It is caused by a lack of financial resources. Florida has the sixth highest rate of child
food insecurity in the nation.

(Feeding America, United States Department of Agriculture, and Sarasota Herald-Tribune)

16% of the general population and 22% of children struggle with food insecurity in America.

Manatee County, 18.7% of the general population and 28.4% of children are food insecure.

Sarasota County, it’s 14.3% of the general population and 25% of children. 

(“Map the Meal Gap” by Feeding America)

Want more information on homelessness, poverty, and how to help? Check out these sites: