Community Shelter Services Prepares For Helping Provide Shelter - Erie News Now | WICU & WSEE in Erie, PA

Community Shelter Services Prepares For Helping Provide Shelter In Cold Conditions

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Temperatures will be downright cold this weekend and when they dip like this, warming and homeless shelters get full. One Erie location, Community Shelter Services, is working with local churches again this year, on an overflow shelter program.  It's called "Our Neighbors Place" but it doesn't start until later this month. 

In the meantime, Community Shelter Services, located on West 16th Street in Erie, will work to help find shelter for those that need it. 
The shelter has been around for 40 years. It helps dozens of people each night, get off the streets and into a warm bed.  Starting on November 22, Community Shelter Services will partner with several area churches for an overflow shelter. each church will be a rotating basis and staff a shelter with volunteers for two weeks

Mark Alexa is the Executive Director of Community Shelter Services. He says, "We do all the logistics. We move the cots, we move the coffee pots, the toasters, all that stuff, the cups, the plates, the blankets, to the new location. Then we move again, and the church takes care of all the volunteers and staffs it, from eight o'clock in the evening to eight o'clock in the morning, so it's just an overnight place."

This year, the overflow shelters will be set up for 18 weeks.  More churches and volunteers are always needed. Here's a look at the first three locations that will start taking in people this winter at overflow shelters: First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant on West 7th Street will provide shelter from November 22 to December 6th. The next two weeks after that, Saint John's Luthern Church on Peach Street will open. Millcreek Community Church will host those weeks. From the end of December and into the New Year, the Church of the Nativity on East Front Street will be an overflow shelter. ##

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