The Counting Us Mobile App and Command Center provide mobile technology, and a data store to receive data from it, for counting both people living on the streets as well as for counting people residing in shelters that are not using HMIS.

Whenever possible, regions should rely on HMIS for data for the sheltered homeless population on the night of the Point in Time Count. However, some projects do not use HMIS at all, or the quality is so poor that it is not usable. In these situations, some regions are using the Counting Us mobile app, or web version, and the Command Center to collect the data necessary for the sheltered report for HUD.

An example of a sheltered survey is shown below and is also accessible in an online browser:




What needs to be done to set up a Sheltered survey in Counting Us?

The sheltered surveys within Counting Us provide the ability for users to select the Organization and Project for which they are collecting information. These Organizations and Projects need to be set up in the Regional Command Center first however or the user will not be able to select their project.  There are two ways that an Administrator can add Organizations and Projects... 

  1. The Count Administrators can click on "Projects" in the left hand navigation bar and add each Organization and Project manually using the "Add Project" button. If an Organization is being added for the first time, you'll need to click the green plus sign and name the organization, then select it from the drop-down in the Add Projects window. Next, name the project and choose a project type. Then click the "Add Project" button, and the project will appear in the list under that Organization.
  2. The Count Administrators can export the HUD CSV data from the region's HMIS and submit the Organization.csv, Project.csv, and ProjectCoC.csv tables to the help desk.  Alternatively, Count Administrators can complete the Organizations and Projects Import Tool and submit the tool to the help desk. Note: This tool should be used for non-DV providers, only. If you need additional support for DV providers, please contact the help desk.

In the future, the "Sync HMIS Projects" button will allow projects to be pulled from the Warehouse by Regional Administrators.

To edit a Project's information (including adding an address) or to Archive a Project, simply select the project, and then click the "Open" button that will appear in the top menu. A new window will appear with the Project Details.



NOTE: Information from domestic violence (DV) projects should not be collected within the Counting Us app as the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) precludes their participation. If you have a DV project for which you are in need of a data collection tool please submit a ticket to our help desk and we will be in touch with a solution that does not require data to be hosted.



How do Sheltered Providers Access and Use Counting Us?

  • Click here for an easy guide to share with your shelter providers.
  • Click here and scroll down to the "Sheltered Providers Counting Us Point in Time Count Training Video" for a step-by-step video on using Counting Us for shelter providers.