RICHMOND, Va. -- One Richmond nonprofit is working to make sure those without a home can get the tools they need to get back on their feet.
On Saturday, Wealth Building Solutions teamed up with Walmart to host a community event for the homeless on North Jefferson Street in Richmond.
“We just wanted to give back to our community in need," Bobby Vincent said.
The event brought out dozens of homeless people looking to change their life, including Jamal Brock.
“I’m currently homeless right now because I’m living in a shelter," Brock said. "And they gave me a bunch of pamphlets that I can get, to get me services and it's services that I do need.”
Among the services he and others were able to get included clothes, showers, food, vaccinations and even haircuts -- all for free.
“Just want to be a blessing, that’s it, be a blessing," Roney Boyd, a local barber who worked the event said. "Between all the barbers, we probably did about 40 [haircuts].”
But the amount of people still homeless in Richmond, is an issue.
A July 2021 Homeward Virginia "point-in-time count," revealed unsheltered homelessness had a 101% increase -- from 98 people in January to 197 people in July 2021.
"Too many people are sleeping on the ground," Rhonda Sneed said.
Rhonda Sneed is with BlessingsRVA, a group who advocates and helps those living on the streets of Richmond.
"Much more families living in their cars. Many people that work in the program that were in the shelters are now in the streets," Sneed said.
She added while pop-up community events are great, the city needs to more for a long-term solution.
"I hope that they have a emergency shelter. Not just for the wintertime, every evening, no one should have to sleep on the ground no matter what the temperature is," Sneed said.
“These individuals here are truly people that are in need. Many of them don’t work, many of them can’t work, so we owe it to our society that we take care of those who are most vulnerable," Vincent added.
If you or someone is three days or less away from experiencing homelessness, call the Homeless Connection Line at 804-972-0813. This phone line facilitates access to resources and shelter alternatives.