Project Connect feeds the homeless

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN)- On any given night, about 500 people in Lincoln are homeless. But Project Connect Lincoln set up a one-stop shop for people to get things like dental check-ups and haircuts for free on Friday.

Every person who came to Pinnacle Bank Arena was given a meal and paired up with a navigator, a volunteer who helped guide them through the 90 booths inside Pinnacle Bank Arena.

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird says she's been a Project Volunteer for several years and called it a humbling experience.

"You know, some people have a vision of what a homeless person looks like but many of the folks who are here, they have jobs, they have incomes, they're just struggling to make ends meet," Gaylor Baird said.

Last year Project Connect Lincoln served 576 people during the event. This year the group opened the event to include people who aren't to just homeless, but those who are at risk of becoming homeless. Project Connect Lincoln organizers believe they served between 700 to 800 people on Friday.

Orangizer Denise Packard said this is the first year they've opened the event up to people who are at risk of being homeless. She hopes by doing so, they might be able to help people avoid becoming homeless in the first place.