Number of homeless grows in western Michigan

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – More than 13,000 people are homeless across five counties in western Michigan, an increase of more than 10 percent over the year before.

The Grand Rapids Press, Kalamazoo Gazette and Muskegon Chronicle report that many homeless in the area work steady jobs and are without homes for the first time. Kimberlee Reinking with the Housing Resource Center of Allegan County says the center is seeing people who have never had to deal with homelessness before.

The same economic downturn that has cost some people their homes is also hurting organizations that aim to help the homeless.

Philanthropists, charities and foundations have been affected by the stock market decline and decreasing donations.