SAN DIEGO -- Nearly 600 homeless people sought services Wednesday at the fifth annual Project Homeless Connect at Golden Hall.

The program steers people living on the street to various social services. More than 250 volunteers and 60 nonprofit organizations took part.

“There are almost 8,000 homeless people in the San Diego region, and there are beds for less than half of them,'' said Rosemary Johnston, the program director at the Interfaith Shelter Network. “By making these services available, we hope to reach people who may feel uncomfortable utilizing traditional shelter programs.''

Those who took advantage of the program received assistance ranging from clothing, blankets, haircuts and toiletries to on-site medical care, housing referrals, legal aid, spiritual counseling and help with substance abuse.

Project Homeless Connect was organized by the San Diego Housing Commission, with help from St. Vincent de Paul Village, the Interfaith Shelter Network and Family Health Centers of San Diego.