On April 23rd, a tent encampment located on a state-owned lot in Raleigh at the intersection of Highways 401 and U.S. 70 was cleared by police. While notice was given to individuals living at the encampment and residents primarily left voluntarily, this is just one example of a growing number of people experiencing homelessness in communities both in the Triangle and around the country.

The lack of affordable housing in our region is increasingly an issue. According to the most recently available point-in-time data from Wake Continuum of Care from January 2023, 916 people were experiencing homelessness at that time, with 354 chronically homeless. As of March 2024, the median sale price of a home in Wake County is $476,000, exceedingly out of reach for many in the county, where the median household income is currently just over $96,000.

The solution to homelessness in our community will require a long-term and systematic approach, and we are encouraged by the recent step taken by the City of Raleigh to dedicate $5 million in funding to pilot a program that takes a different approach to reducing homelessness and has been successful in other cities in the US.

There are already many great organizations that serve Wake County and the Triangle providing direct service to people experiencing homelessness and those doing advocacy at the local and state level, and we encourage you to learn more about them. Here are just a few:

Statewide advocacy

  • NC Housing Coalition – Aims to lead a movement to ensure that every North Carolinian has a home in which to live with dignity and opportunity. The Coalition meets its mission by convening, resourcing, and mobilizing affordable housing professionals, communities impacted by a lack of affordability, and the broader public to pursue policies at the local, state, and federal levels that improve the supply, quality, and access of affordable housing in North Carolina.

Direct service

  • Healing Transitions – Offers innovative peer-based, recovery-oriented services to homeless, uninsured, and underserved individuals with alcoholism and other drug addictions. Their FORward together campaign builds housing for women and their dependents who are coming out of recovery.
  • CASA - Provides access to stable, affordable housing for people who are homeless or at risk by developing and managing rental communities in Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill.
  • Haven House – Helps youth be safe, supported, and successful through programs that help youth experiencing homelessness and/or a crisis.
  • Oak City Cares – A public-private partnership that exists to support the self-determination of individuals experiencing homelessness through trusting relationships and connections to coordinated services that increase their ability to be safely and stably housed.
  • Families Together - Through direct support and advocacy, they assist families with children transition from homelessness to sustainable housing and stable homes.
  • Triangle Family Services – Offers programs focused on family safety, financial stability, and mental health, and provides direct assistance through emergency housing, case management, street outreach, and financial counseling.