FARGO, N.D. -

Fargo Police say they get many calls during the summertime concerning panhandlers in the downtown area.
 
But some say homelessness affects many people in many areas of the metro...some you may not expect.

Many folks say homelessness has a large presence in Downtown Fargo.

But what is the true face of homelessness?

How do we really know who has and does not have a home?

As Lisa Lipari from Churches United for the Homeless says, it could be anyone.
 
"The face of homelessness in our community is everyone from a newborn baby, that we have right here in the shelter, to a 94-year-old woman who actually crossed our doorstep a couple weeks ago," Lipari says.
 
Panhandling is illegal but Fargo Police say we shouldn't make assumptions.
 
"It's not necessarily homeless people, it can be any number of people who are panhandling, so we try to enforce that the best we can," Deputy Cheif Joe Anderson says.
 
He says intoxicated people are not allowed in shelters, but can be taken to detox facilities if they're struggling with addiction.
 
"If someone is dealing with addiction issues, that compounds their homelessness. If they can't find a place to stay, they can't beat their addiction," Anderson says.
 
Anderson says the large homelessness presence in downtown is largely due to the amount of resources available to them.

But Lipari says this is prevalent in the whole F-M area: not just downtown.
 
"I wouldn't focus on homelessness being only in downtown, I would say that it's an issue for our entire Fargo-Moorhead community and in our region. I imagine it may be possible that there's some focus on downtown Fargo because some of the population navigates there because the reality is the services are there, the public library, the clinic, the bus depot," Lipari says.
 
If you are approached by someone who makes you uncomfortable, police say to give them a call.

There are many organizations in the F-M area working together to get homes for those in need.

This October, Churches United is hosting a ground break for an apartment complex intended to help give permanent housing.