LOUISVILLE, Ky. — During its latest point in time count in January, the Coalition for the Homeless found over 1,600 people living either a shelter or outdoors. That’s a nearly 50% increase from 2022. To help those experiencing homelessness, the group Hip Hop Cares makes it their weekly mission to make sure those individuals have the resources they need.

What You Need To Know

  • The Coalition for the Homeless found more than 1600 people living either a shelter or outdoors

  • Hip Hop Cares serves over 400 people a week all over Louisville with winter essentials

  • The colder weather can pose some serious dangers for those who are homeless leading to hypothermia, frostbite and other cold related illnesses

Founder and outreach worker Jeff Gill started Hip Hop Cares seven years ago.

“It really just started as me saying, I want to take the extra stuff I have in my closet and my bedding and hit the streets and when I hit the streets, I realized that it’s a lot more than just passing stuff out,” said Gill.

Now Hip Hop Cares serves over 400 people a week all over Louisville. Gill says he has seen first-hand how dangerous the bitter cold can be for those who are experiencing homelessness.

“People that pass away from things such as hypothermia or when we have our friends’ limbs fall off or whatnot because of frostbite,” said Gill

When temperatures drop below freezing, Hip Hop cares’ focus is saving lives and limbs.

“It’s also a matter of saving extremities. So supplies like gloves, hats, hand warmers, thermal socks and Sterno, Are very vital to keeping people alive and keeping them with all of their limbs,” explained Gill.

Jeff says winter gear for those who are homeless are constantly having to replace their items since the city does sweeps throughout the week.

“While they’re clearing spots, oftentimes people will be at. Soup kitchens, getting food, and then they show up and all of the belongings get thrown away. So it’s not just a matter of getting things in one time just during the season or whatnot. We have to keep things coming in,” said Gill.

If you would like to get involved, Hip Hop Cares meets every Sunday near the Taco Bell next to the overpass on East Broadway in downtown Louisville or check out their Amazon wish list of the most current needs.