Apache Junction, Ariz. — A Pinal County organization says the number of people experiencing homelessness is on the rise and there aren't enough resources to help them.
genesis project Serve hot meals, distribute clothing and amenities, and coordinate local resources for those in need.
“These are unsheltered neighbors. These are community members. They are residents of these areas,” said Superintendent Trinity Frey.
When the Bureau of Land Management announced the closure of more than 1,000 acres of public land along State Route 88, the Genesis Project became the go-to place for the many homeless people who frequently camp there.
“We've been working with those people,” Frey said. “Unfortunately, Pinal County doesn’t have many solutions.”
Frey said the housing struggle is not limited to desert campgrounds, but rather a growing need for shelter and transitional housing in Pinal County.
“We don’t have homeless shelters, especially in Apache Junction,” Frey said. “We have a lot of vacant land. We don't have public transportation. We make the most of the resources we have, but a person can only make use of the resources he has. So if that resource is not available, there is no answer.”
Frey said at the most recent point-in-time count in Apache Junction this year, 163 people were experiencing homelessness, an increase of nearly 80% in one year.
The Pinal County Housing Authority regularly lists vacant homes. Click here to apply for cheap housing Additional Resources for individuals experiencing difficulties.