Robert Marbut

Sandra Averhart / WUWF Public Media

The 2018 Point-in-Time (PIT) survey of homeless people living in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties was conducted Wednesday, January 24.

Data from the count is important. Beyond that data, local officials have commissioned the University of West Florida to conduct a study on the cost of homelessness, which they plan to use to help determine their next steps in addressing the problem.

The last PIT survey in 2017 showed 758 homeless people living in the two-county area. Of those, 539 were men, 117 were veterans, and 135 were chronically homeless.

Robert Marbut, who has spent three decades working on homeless issues, visited Pensacola Wednesday and conducted a Community Forum on Homelessness sponsored by the City.

Speaking in the City Council Chambers, Marbut outlined his work with dozens of cities, and his involvement in establishing Haven for Hope in his hometown of San Antonio -- where homelessness has dropped by around 85 percent.

Robert Marbut, a 30-year veteran of working on homeless issues, is the featured speaker this afternoon at a Community Forum on Homelessness sponsored by the City of Pensacola.

Marbut has worked with dozens of cities to reduce homelessness. He also led the Haven for Hope in San Antonio from concept to opening. After conducting a nationwide “best practices” study of homeless services, he developed the Seven Guiding Principles of Homeless Transformation, which have been adopted by a dozen communities.