Where can homeless turn during cold nights?
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Winter weather marches on and more snow is just days away. You may wonder who is helping the homeless in our community.
Right now, there are many people in Southcentral Kentucky without a home to keep warm at night.
“The winters in Bowling Green are pretty tough,” said David Hulman. Hulman has experienced homelessness for a few years now. “It’s unpredictable, and if you don’t have somebody there with you, or a shelter or if you’re out on the streets it can get pretty brutal.”
With temperatures falling, people wonder where the local homeless population should go.
Salvation Army has a 24-hour shelter to house men, women and children year round. They provide three meals a day.
Sheroen Dukes has been homeless ever since January 5th. He’s one of many suffering from December’s tornado repercussions. “I was able to stay with a friend for a couple of days,” said Dukes. “They took me in, they were like ‘Man we don’t want you out in the cold’, but at the same time they had their landlord, and people couldn’t live with them. I had already heard about the Salvation Army, so I came to see if I could get some help, and fortunately I was able to be helped.”
When the temperature drops below 35 degrees, Salvation Army opens up their white flag warming centers day and night.
Bowling Green Salvation Army’s Captain Monica Horton said, “We partner with Room in the Inn so that we can take their overflow if needed, because they definitely take care of a lot of the white flag sheltering nights as well. So, we’re just happy to be here for the community, and when it gets cold we want to make sure people have a warm place to go.”
Room in the Inn partners with local churches to provide warm meals and places to sleep, and it’s another place people experiencing homelessness can turn.
“It’s a rough situation,” said Donnie Reed. Reed has been homeless for the last seven months, and he appreciates Salvation Army’s help. “It sure is. But, Miss Monica and everyone here are doing their best to help take care of us.”
“I’m thankful to be here,” agreed Dukes. “I’m very thankful to be here. My plan for the future is to get myself together, get a job and get back on my feet as soon as possible. With the help of the Salvation Army, I think I can do that.”
Salvation Army said they want to be here to help anyone in need get out of the cold.
“Even right now, we have space in our shelter, and we’re ready to have people getting in and ready to get on their feet again,” said Horton.
With reports of snow on the way in the coming days, for those who want to make a donation or volunteer at the Salvation Army or Room In the Inn, this is a perfect time to help.