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2,000+ homeless take cover from winter storm in area shelters

Denver Rescue Mission needs sock donations of all sizes and volunteers to serve meals at shelters.

DENVER — The City and County of Denver, Denver Rescue Mission and other homeless service providers worked together this weekend to help shelter people experiencing homelessness from the winter storm.

Shelter operations ramped up this weekend due to the forecasted storm. Denver Rescue Mission brought in extra supplies and had additional staff stay overnight at each location prior to the storm's arrival. 

According to the city, 2,280 guests were provided overnight shelter on Sunday night – Denver Rescue Mission accounted for over 500 of those guests.

According to Nicole Tschetter, public relations manager at Denver Rescue Mission, they sheltered 258 men overnight at the 48th Avenue Center, 130 men overnight at Lawrence Street Shelter and worked with the city and Salvation Army to bring 176 men to the Denver Coliseum for overflow sheltering.

“When Denver Rescue Mission is faced with the extreme weather like we saw this past weekend, we really rely heavily on our partnerships throughout the community to make sure that we are providing the best services and access to shelters,” Tschetter said. “We work hand in hand with the city of Denver, as well as other homeless service providers in the area to make sure that anybody who is outside knows that they are welcomed into our shelters.”

The Lawrence shelter is not set to officially open until late March, but because of the extreme weather, the mission was able to utilize this shelter to bring in more people over the weekend.

The Holly Center and Warren Street Community Center are places where men typically go to then get transported to other shelters based on their needs, but because of the bad road conditions, only one bus was able to make it to other shelters this weekend, according to Tschetter. So, the Lawrence shelter was used in place of those to shelter 130 men.

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St. Charles Recreation Center was also established as an overflow shelter and took in guests who were transferred by first responders each night. It accommodated two guests on Friday night, seven guests on Saturday night and six guests on Sunday night, according to Derek Woodbury, communications director for the Department of Housing Stability. 

St. Charles was open during the day Mar. 15-16 as a warming center for men and women and remained open overnight, providing overnight shelter for men and transgender individuals. Transportation was available to connect female guests to other overnight shelter locations.

If you want to donate or volunteer, Denver Rescue Mission said they could use the help.

“We're really looking for donations of socks and a variety of different sizes, as well as just individuals who, if they are able to safely get to the mission to sign up, to serve a meal with us,” Tschetter said.

You can find more donation information and volunteer sign ups on Denver Rescue Mission’s website.

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