The Roanoke Rescue Mission says a new program they started a little more than a year ago is working.
"We've refocused on the chronic homelessness and so we're not just putting a band-aid on homelessness, we're not just giving a emergency shelter anymore. We are really identifying the individual's needs and helping them to meet their own needs that's the key," said Anders Sylvester - Johnson.
The Tabitha Program is helping the homeless find permanent housing and jobs, improving their social skills and helping them find self-worth.
We're told there were a little more than 2800 people who stayed in the homeless shelter last year. The average length of stay was 44 nights.
This year there were about 2900 people staying at the Roanoke Rescue Mission but the length of stay dropped to 38 nights.
We're told woman and children have been the fastest groups of growing homelessness in our area over the last decade. On average anywhere from 40 to 75 children stay at the shelter.