NYC Homeless Outreach Population Estimate 2024, Volunteers Needed!

On the night of Tuesday, January 23, 2024, NYC’s Department of Social Services, the Human Resources Administration, and the Department of Homeless Services will conduct its annual Homeless Outreach Population Estimate (HOPE) survey, a point-in-time survey undertaken each winter that helps the City estimate the number of unsheltered New Yorkers living on the street on one of the coldest nights of the year and provide valuable information that helps determine how to allocate resources to best serve New Yorkers in need with care and compassion.

On the night of HOPE, volunteers help out by canvassing streets, parks, subways, and other public spaces. Volunteers are needed from approximately 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. on the night of January 23rd. Just a few hours of your time will help the ongoing efforts to support New Yorkers experiencing unsheltered homelessness and encourage them to take that first important step to come off the streets and subways and accept the vital services and supports they need and deserve. Through DSS’ 24/7/365 outreach efforts, more than 8,500 New Yorkers experiencing unsheltered homelessness have been referred to transitional and/or permanent housing in FY22 alone. Your participation in HOPE will help build on that progress.

The safety of everyone involved in HOPE is of highest priority. Facilities will be set up to promote social distancing, and masks and other PPE will be provided. Volunteers always go out in teams of 3-4 people, but you are also encouraged to sign up to volunteer with friends and family if possible. Training for HOPE volunteers will be conducted virtually before HOPE, and volunteers will be dismissed remotely after canvassing.

If you are a city employee, compensatory time may be available to you for participating – consult with your Agency and supervisor to see if this applies.

To learn more and to register, visit Your participation is essential to helping us address the challenge of homelessness and support some of our City’s most vulnerable residents as they get back on their feet.

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