BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) -- Homelessness is a big problem in this country, and one we don't always see because many people who are displaced are wary and stay out of sight.
One group in Brunswick County faced the conditions of homelessness head-on during this cold night to make people aware of the problem that exists right here.
"We're just a small ministry ourselves, and just since the first of September my husband's Street Team, which is all volunteers, have helped 21 individuals that they have gotten out of mini storage buildings and boxes that they were living in," Donna Phelps said.
To make others aware of the plight of the homeless Phelps and her ministry invited people to join them living for a day as the homeless do. This isn't camping. These are cardboard boxes, tarps plastic bags and the very basics.
Jay Hancock has lived on the streets.
"Suffering, scared. it's not fun," Hancock said. "I hope we can do something to help the homeless. This is rough out here."
Hancock is better able to take the cold than his dog Taco, and the night was very cold. A fire provided much needed warmth for the group.
Phelps wants the whole community to get a message from her experience.
"I want people to realize that we are all supposed to be our brothers' and sisters' keepers, and with the way the economy is going and with the way the chaos is in the world and people are losing their jobs, losing their homes and really struggling that more than anything we just want to see communities come together and try and reach out and help each other," Phelps said.
Phelps says the problem is growing with the economic problems in Brunswick County, but you can help. Volunteers and donations are welcome. If you want to add to the solution contact Brunswick Family Assistance at (910) 754-4766.