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Point-In-Time Count

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What is the Point-In-Time Count

The Point-in-Time (PIT) Count is an event required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the State of Washington Department of Commerce to survey individuals experiencing homelessness. PIT Counts are a crucial source of data on the number and characteristics of people who are homeless in the United States. PIT Count data is an important source for local program and system planning. This data is used to adjust the types of services available according to need, resulting in a more efficient use of limited resources. 

A Point-In-Time Count (PIT) is a statistically reliable count of people experiencing homelessness during a 24-hour period within the last 10 days in January. 

The PIT Count includes both sheltered homeless (emergency shelters or transitional housing) and unsheltered (those living in places that are not meant for human habitation).

This year, in Pierce County the PIT Count will be conducted on January 27, 2017, asking people who are experiencing homelessness where did they sleep on the night of January 26, 2017.

Data complied from the PIT Count creates local, state and national estimates of homelessness, and also estimates the degree of chronic homelessness and the number of homeless veterans and homeless youth and young adults.

"The Point-In-Time Count provides the homeless assistance community with the data needed to understand the number and characteristics of persons who are homeless at one point in time."                                                                    - U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development 

Get Involved  

In order to have an effective count, it is important to have dedicated volunteers to participate in our efforts. Volunteers are necessary for the actual count and they are also an important factor in the events leading up to the PIT Count. 

On the day of the Count, volunteers are needed between the hours of 7:00am - 7:00pm for two-to-three hour blocks of time to help conduct the PIT Count. 

All Volunteers must be 18 years of age or older. 

Some of the Duties Required of Volunteers:
  • Attend one (1) of the mandatory PIT Count Trainings.
  • Be able to walk one or two miles unassisted.
  • Be able to stand for long periods of time.
  • Search for unsheltered homeless within a designated location(s).
  • Review PIT Count survey prior to the count and become familiar with the questions.
  • Return all survey forms (completed) to the designated region leader.


Prior to volunteering for the PIT Count, all volunteers are required to attend one of the scheduled trainings. During the PIT Count volunteer training, the following topics will be discussed:
  • Reasons for the survey;
  • The process by which data is collected; and
  • PIT Count safety information.

Click here to view the full listings of the Point-In-Time (PIT) Count trainings
Click here to view the Point-In-Time (PIT) Count training materials. 
(training materials will be provided at a later time)


Each year when we conduct the PIT Count, in addition to volunteers, we also need donations. 

Donations will be provided to survey participants. The types of donations we like to provide include (but are not limited too): 

  • Socks
  • Gloves
  • Blankets
  • Duffel Bags
  • Jackets
  • Flashlights/batteries
  • Toiletries
  • Resuable Bags
  • Ponchos
  • Hats
  • Scarfs
  • Sleeping Bags
  • Bottled Water
  • Towels
  • Diapers/Wipes
  • First Aid Kits 

Learn more about how you can donate items for this year's Point-In-Time (PIT) Count

Planning Committee Meetings & Agendas 


PIT Count Planning Committee Meeting 1.5.17

PIT Count Planning Committee Meeting 1.5.17

PIT Count Planning Committee Meeting 12.1.16

PIT Count Planning Committee Meeting 11.3.16

PIT Count Planning Committee Meeting 10.18.16

Publications & Archive 

2016 Point-In-Time Count

2015 Point-In-Time Count

2014 Point-In-Time Count
  • Report

2013 Point-In-Time Count
  • Report

2012 Point-In-Time Count

2011 Point-In-Time Count
  • Report

2010 Point-In-Time Count

2009 Point-In-Time Count