6th Annual Project Service Connect - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

6th Annual Project Service Connect

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Although there's a booming economy, the population of homeless people in the state is also on the rise.

Ben Smith takes a look at one project in Bismarck hoping... to help the homeless.

It's a problem that many people in North Dakota have had to face.

"There is a lot of work here but the housing and setup whenever they come up has kind of been an issue."

Ricky Lewellen came to North Dakota just like so many before him, for work.  But less than a year after moving here from Texas, things took a turn for the worse.

"Through some situations I end up loosing everything...

He lost his job, his apartment and very nearly... his sanity.

"...ended up in the psyche ward because of a breakdown and kind of lost all sight of reality."

Since hitting that low point, Lewellen has been able to bounce back.

But only because of things like Project Service Connect.

On Thursday, the Missouri Valley Coalition for Homeless People held it's 6th annual Project Service Connect at Bismarck Veterans Memorial Public Library.  Giving chance for those without homes to get a hair cut, to look for a job, or to visit with a doctor

Paul Herr is the president of the coalition.  Throughout the years, he has seen lives begin to change.

"There are success stories, we see some of the same people year after year.  But we see them having taken a few steps forward"

Lewellen one of these stories says he is a step further than he was this time last year.

"Kept me moving on, help me through of my issues and helping me push forward."

And though it's not been easy, he has decided to stick with North Dakota.

"I don't regret it.  I'm not leaving no matter what."

Ben Smith, KXNews

This year, 20 different businesses throughout Burleigh County provided services to the homeless.
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