Arizona’s summer temperatures can be extremely dangerous for our neighbors experiencing homelessness. People die of heat-related illnesses every year in Maricopa County. Those living outside in the elements are especially at-risk.
338 people lost their lives in 2021 due to heat-related illnesses. 125 of those people were homeless at the time of their death.
Right now, as many as 9,000 people in Maricopa County are experiencing homelessness.
Those experiencing homelessness are more likely to suffer from:
There are cooling stations set up across Maricopa County. Anyone can go there to find shade and cold water.
The City of Phoenix has partnered with local corporations to offer rides to the stations in Phoenix. Anyone needing a ride to a station can call 211. 2-1-1 Arizona is partnering with Lyft this summer to offer dree rides to emergency cooling centers and heat relief stations.
1. Donate Water.
Water is the #1 item needed during the summer months. You can always donate water bottles to Valley of the Sun United Way, other nonprofits or at any Maricopa County cooling station.
2. Help Valley of the Sun United Way assemble Heat Relief Kits
We are packing up kits to distribute to those who need it most. They are filled with water, sunscreen, hats, hygiene products and more. Corporations, foundations, groups, and individuals can sponsor a Hygiene Kit build, donate items or volunteer to help assemble the kits.
3. Donate funds!
One of Valley of the Sun United Way’s main impact areas is addressing the housing and homelessness issue in our community. We are working with partners to decrease housing insecurity by investing in rent and utility assistance, housing navigators and eviction prevention. We also support emergency shelters that help move households out of crisis.
We are partnered with more than 60 nonprofits and agencies focused on helping those experiencing homelessness. Your donation will help fund their programs and create a better community for everyone.
$25 provides one night of emergency shelter for a family of three.
Valley of the Sun United Way is committed to creating an equitable, inclusive community for everyone. Our Mighty Change 5-year plan ensures all residents in Maricopa County have the support they need to lead healthy, happy lives.