Shelters expect full house during cold nights ahead - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Shelters expect full house during cold nights ahead

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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

These extremely cold temperatures can be more than dangerous, they can be deadly for hundreds of homeless people in the area. The Cherry Street Mission will never turn anyone away during this cold weather.

Calvin Smallwood is one of 270 people who depend on the mission for a safe place to stay and keep warm. For him, it's beyond a blessing.

"Being here out of the cold in 10-below, 14-below weather is – it's unexpressable, how a person feels," he said.

With next week's temperatures predicted to not even reach zero degrees, the mission plans to house a lot more people.

"We're making sure that each one of our critical facilities is self-contained, making sure that food stocks and reserves are high and that all of the warm gear is on every site," said Dan Rogers, CEO of Cherry Street Mission.

To make this possible, the mission needs the community's help. They are asking for donations of towels, shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste and deodorant. More importantly, if you see anyone huddled outside in the cold without a place to stay, call Cherry Street Mission.

"If you actually see someone who needs shelter, please call us right away and let us know the location of that individual," Rogers said. "We have vans that go out every day looking for people that need shelter."

The number for Cherry Street Mission is 419-242-5141.

Another place taking people in is St. Paul's Community Center. Every night at 7 p.m. people can show up for a hot meal, shower and a warm place to sleep. They can even provide clothing if needed.

"The need is an extreme need," said Deb Renollet from St. Paul's. "Something people are not aware of. A lot of time we go to the comfort of our home and forget there are a lot of people out there freezing.

They can hold about 60 people each night and are located in the 200 block of 13th Street. The only downside is people must check out by 7 a.m. the next morning, but they are welcome to return again that night.

"It means everything," said Randy O'Connor, who has stayed at St. Paul's. "Just to have a place to come to where it's warm means a lot."

For more information about St. Paul's, call 419-255-5520, extension 208.

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