Seemingly intractable, homelessness is among the biggest problems facing the Madison area. For nine months, the Wisconsin State Journal has been investigating its root causes, obstacles to solutions and the insidious effects on the people it swallows up.
We tell this complex and often heartbreaking story in four chapters. Tap on any chapter heading to jump to that section.
Chapter I: Homelessness is rising in the face of limited state support, and local efforts have fallen short.
Chapter II: The growing numbers of homeless -- most of them families and children -- strain social and public safety services and challenge the area's schools.
Chapter III: The local patchwork of service providers has gaps, struggles to meet the need and offers a hodgepodge of shelters that fall short of modern standards of humane shelter.
Chapter IV: There are many models for a way forward on homelessness. Which is best for Madison, and who will lead the way?