The third annual Bridge City Project is set for Friday, January 22,  in downtown Texarkana. On that night, the Texarkana Homeless Coalition will again take their mission to the streets.The event is designed to be a challenge to community leaders, government officials and residents to raise awareness and funds, and to reach out to a segment of our community who are most in need. Their challenge is simple -- spend one night living the plight of the homeless.

Participants, who may participate as individuals or part of a team, will spend the night sleeping outside in a box. Each participant is asked to try and raise a minimum of $100 for the event. Those who spend the entire night will be given shirts and included in a drawing for a Yeti cooler. Event sponsors and volunteers are also being sought.

Once again this year, local schools and churches will participate in building sleeping structures that will be used at the event. Awards will be given in two categories. There will also be a chili cook-off. The entry fee for the cook-off is $25 and contestants are asked to make enough chili for 50 people. Any leftovers will be given to the local shelters.

The event will take place at the corner of Fifth and Oak Streets in Texarkana, Texas, beginning at 6PM Friday (Jan. 22) and ending at 6AM. Funds raised through this project and other projects sponsored by the Texarkana Homeless Coalition will be used to fund scholarships for educational opportunities for those experiencing homelessness.

Money raised will also go to a bike share program so that those in our community who are homeless can obtain transportation; and provide capacity building support for direct service agencies in the way of training and technical assistance.

Coalition members will also be conducting their annual point-in-time homeless population count on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016. Every year the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires all Homeless Coalitions to collect data on homelessness by the last week in January.

For entry forms or for more information on the Texarkana Homeless Coalition please visit their website or email them at txkhomelesscoalition@gmail.com.