Fencing is going up around the Lavilla tent city.
Sydney Boles / WJCT News

Citing health and safety violations, the city of Jacksonville is fencing off a LaVilla block near Downtown where homeless people have been living in an informal tent city. 


Orders to stay-at-home are nearly impossible to follow for the 500 homeless people living on Jacksonville’s streets.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

Changing Homelessness hopes the “third time’s the charm” when it comes to getting a federal grant to help homeless young people on the First Coast.

Left to Right: Councilmembers Bill Gulliford, Terrance Freeman and Ju'Coby Pittman discussing homelessness in Jacksonville.
Brendan Rivers / WJCT News

City Council members attending a Thursday meeting agree more affordable housing options are needed to help fight homelessness in Jacksonville, but funding development projects could be difficult.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

A Jacksonville housing development set to open this week blends temporary crisis and permanent low-income housing — mostly for women.

Feeding Northeast Florida

More hungry families in Jacksonville will get the food they need thanks to Feeding Northeast Florida and a $30,000 grant from United Healthcare.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

The federally-mandated homeless census — called the Point in Time count — takes place around the country Wednesday.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

Veteran homelessness has dropped 80 percent in Jacksonville since 2009, that’s according to a new report from nonprofit Changing Homelessness.

Jon Dawson / Flickr

St. Augustine city commissioners will take up the issue of homelessness and panhandling at their meeting Monday.

Cardboard City

Monday on First Coast Connect, we heard about the upcoming Cardboard City event with Mark Landschoot, executive director of Family Promise of Jacksonville (01:09).  

We spoke with Duduzile Sibanda from the group Nubuntu and pianist Andrew Lee, both performing Tuesday in Jacksonville (24:46).   

Former Jacksonville Suns owner Peter Bragan Jr. told us about an upcoming fundraiser at the Alhambra Theatre (34:23).    

Cole Pepper talked about the Jaguars win over the Bengals and the Florida Gators loss at Missouri (46:00).  


tiny house
Tomas Quinones via Flickr

On this episode of Redux: 

A look at Mayor Lenny Curry’s proposed budget, the first since 2011 with some “wiggle room” to spend on infrastructure and other big projects like getting downtown ready for developers who might want some waterfront property.

Then, Democrat Gwen Graham swung through Jacksonville and picked up a couple of endorsements this week on her quest for the governor’s mansion.

A pilot program to help the homeless shows housing them first and providing other supports later is a big money saver.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

Homeless people have better outcomes if they're first given a home and then support services like job help. 

That's the conclusion advocates are drawing after a two-year pilot program called The Solution That Saves.  

City Awarded Grant To Help Homeless Veterans Find Jobs

Jun 21, 2017
Bonnie Zerr / WJCT News

Jacksonville has been awarded $225,000 to help homeless veterans get jobs.

Military Affairs and Veterans Department Director Bill Spann said the city has received the federal grant from the U.S. Department of Labor for at least five years.

Wednesday on “First Coast Connect,” we spoke with Mission House Executive Director Lori Delgado Anderson about their mission and work they do to help the homeless at the Beaches. Ahead of his appearance Thursday at WJCT host Melissa Ross spoke with former U.S. Comptroller General Dave Walker. Jacksonville Women’s Leadership Forum Board President Chris Schwing talked about this year’s forum “Game On! The Power of Women — It’s Our Time to Lead” and Girls Scouts of Gateway Council CEO Mary Anne Jacobs talked about this year’s cookie drive. 


Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

On the 22nd of every month, members of the Jacksonville chapter of Veterans for Peace gather in Five Points to focus public attention on the suicide rate among veterans.

On Tuesday, the group stood on the corner of Post and Park streets holding signs and waving to drivers.

Ability Housing of Northeast Florida / Facebook

A Jacksonville nonprofit is trying to move homeless people into a new apartment complex.

Ability Housing is turning to an Internet crowdfunding campaign to help ease people’s transition from the streets to their own homes.

Silverware, pillows, sheets, bed linens, toilet paper and paper towels are just a few things Ability Housing Executive Director Shannon Nazworth reads off of a list of about 40 items that will be given to homeless people moving into a new complex on Jacksonville’s Westside.

A recent Associated Press analysis found that Hillary Clinton has raised more money in Florida than any other 2016 presidential candidate, including Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio. Meanwhile, an ABC News poll of potential Republican voters showed Donald Trump with a double digit lead on other GOP candidates. We discuss the 2016 landscape with Matt Corrigan, UNF political science professor and author of "Conservative Hurricane: How Jeb Bush Remade Florida."

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

While some Jacksonville teenagers are worrying about who will ask them to prom or what car they’ll get on their birthday, others are just hoping they’ll have a bed to sleep in.

Tabitha Cobb and Zina Simpson both just graduated from Duval County Schools and are planning for college this fall.

Cobb will be off to the University of Central Florida where she’ll be majoring in psychology. She says she wants to open her own practice and help children.

Simpson was accepted to Florida A&M in Tallahassee. She also wants to help people as a registered nurse.

Jessica Palombo / WJCT News

Being a military veteran is one of the factors that make it more likely a person will become homeless.

In Jacksonville, it’s estimated one-in-10 homeless people are vets. That’s fewer than five years ago, thanks to local groups using federal grants to get veterans under roofs.

Now, one of those groups is embarking on an ambitious goal of sheltering more than one homeless veteran every day this year.

Lou Dougherty works for Emergency Services and Homeless Coalition of Northeast Florida.

Shannon LeDuke / WJCT

An Orange County public school teacher is in Jacksonville this week to bring attention to issues facing homeless people. Thomas Rebman took a year off from his career to live homeless in cities around Florida. He was across the street from Jacksonville’s Hemming Park Friday morning.

hemming plaza
Jessica Palombo / WJCT News

As the city of Jacksonville works to revitalize its Downtown, several organizations are trying to keep up with the changing needs of its homeless population. WJCT visited Hemming Park today as a handful of nonprofits showcased the services they offer to unsheltered people.

At lunch time in Hemming Park, the paved square between the Downtown library and City Hall, throngs of people are passing through or ordering from food truck windows, while other sit on benches and socialize.

Ability Housing of Northeast Florida / Twitter

Ability Housing of Northeast Florida is appealing the Jacksonville planning department's decision stifling its plans to purchase a set of Springfield apartments.

Emergency Services and Homeless Coalition of Northeast Florida

A recently launched advertising campaign is calling attention to the number of homeless veterans in Duval, Clay and Nassau Counties.

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Springfield residents showed up in force to a meeting Thursday night to discuss a new housing development for the homeless proposed for the neighborhood.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT

About 200 volunteers armed with maps, questionnaires and flashlights fanned out across Duval County at 4 a.m. this morning for the annual point-in-time homeless count.

100 Homes Jacksonville

Community advocates in Jacksonville are hoping to take another step towards ending homelessness in the city later this month.

Northside Business Leaders

Advocates for Jacksonville's homeless population say it’s a complicated problem that goes beyond the city's urban core.