Arctic weather creates overflow at homeless shelters - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Arctic weather creates overflow at homeless shelters

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(01/21/13) - When the mercury takes a dip, Mid-Michigan shelters tend to fill up very fast with those who have no place to call home.

Many of those shelters are keeping their doors open a few extra hours.

With temperatures in the single digits, many are prepared to be packed the rest of the week.

With more arctic weather moving through Mid-Michigan , local shelters are preparing for more guests looking to stay warm.

"I'm really glad this place is here," said Michele Gregg.

Michelle and her 8-year-old daughter were calling the City Rescue Mission in Saginaw home Monday night. They've been homeless for nearly two weeks.

If she hadn't heard about the shelter through a friend, Michelle and her daughter would be stuck in the frigid cold.

"That would have been my situation two weeks ago, but luckily I found out we had a place," Gregg said.

Many shelters are overflowing this week. With the chilly temperatures, the City Rescue Mission has been averaging about 100 people a night. They don't turn anyone away.

"We have a stock of warm blankets that we keep handy for nights like tonight and so we are well prepared for anyone coming in out of the bitter cold," said Marcia Reeves.

Nina Cliatt, who has been at the shelter for a year, remembers having to sleep out in an abandon house on a night where it was just as cold.

"Thank God for shelters like this. Thank God. They have warm blankets. Coats, just anything that you need to keep you warm. I don't have to worry about being evicted or being out in the cold anymore," Cliatt said.

The City Rescue Mission opens its doors 24 hours a day.

 My Brothers Keeper in Flint is one of many shelters that's extending its hours until 11 this week.

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