When Iowa’s frigid winter blows in, the change in weather can be life-threatening for people experiencing homelessness. As temperatures drop, they are at an increased risk of developing exposure-related conditions and dying from the below-zero temperatures. The Out of the Cold campaign funds our low-barrier Winter Emergency Shelter and Overflow Shelter and provides increased shelter capacity which is essential to accommodate the amplified need during winter months. Through these efforts combined we ensure that anyone experiencing homelessness in our community, no matter their circumstance, is kept out of the cold.
With our expanded winter shelter capacity, individuals who would have otherwise been incarcerated or sleeping in encampments, parking ramps and hallways of apartment buildings are instead ensured a safe, warm place to sleep. For the past four winters, as a direct result of these services, vagrancy calls to the police have decreased precipitously as have emergency room usage and ambulance service calls; no one has died on our streets from exposure.
Read about our winter programs and hear from a guest of our low-barrier winter emergency shelter below.
NOV 2017 | Little Village | Shelter House’s winter programs, Housing First project fight homelessness in Johnson County