A collective of musicians will keep the homefires burning warm as the mercury drops this fall, with an annual festival designed to help put roofs over homeless heads.

Homefest has grown from humble beginnings in its seven-year tenure. The rootsy folk-music collective moved from a modest inner-city church to its home at the TransAlta Arts Barns, where five homegrown groups will jam for donations on Nov. 1.

“The problems of homelessness in Edmonton are probably worse than they’ve ever been, and certainly far worse than they were seven years ago,” organizer Jim Gurnett said.

“On the surface, it wouldn’t appear that things are getting any better, but some people that come to the event don’t understand the reality of the situation any other way.”

Organizers hope to raise $10,000 for local charities with the event, money Gurnett said is sorely needed, as government support is at a minimum for most organizations.

A 2008 census concluded around 3,100 Edmontonians are without a place to sleep each night. Of those, 250 are children.

Artists include U22 Revue, Bob Jahrig and Dennis Lakusta.

Tickets and information can be found at homefest.ca.