Safe House Ministry provides shelter for those in need due to freezing temperatures

Local News

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL)- With temperatures dropping in the 20’s SafeHouse Ministries is opening its doors to everyone in the community who is in need of a warm place to stay.

SafeHouse Ministries Executive Director, Niel Richardson told News 3 the homeless shelter makes it their mission to get people off the street when temperatures are 28 degrees and below.

“Depending on how cold it gets we can have anywhere from 30-70 people,” Richardson said.

With COVID cases on the rise, Safe House Ministries will still enforce COVID safety for those coming to stay for the night.

“Anybody that’s not vaccinated is maks mandatory, it’s optional for fully vaccinated. That’s our policy here and that hasn’t changed, we also have the homeless isolation center. So anybody that’s homeless that gets a positive test or has been exposed and is nervous we have an isolation unit for them,” Richardson said.

Even though COVID cases are spiking, there is no limit to how many people can come to weather out the cold.

“We’ve got 70 cots plus couches, plus pews in the sanctuary. The most we’ve ever had in here is 85 and that was actually during the first few months of COVID, back in 2020. So we have more room than there is a need and we’re not going to have just homeless people tonight. There are people who run out of money and they can’t pay their power bill, so we’ve got people who have no power that will drive up here tonight and stay with us. We have people that are new to homelessness that are staying in cars as they’re making that transition from houses to homeless and they’ll be coming in here tonight,” Richardson said.

With the influx of people who will be coming to the Safe House, Richardson is asking those in the community to donate coffee, sugar, milk, and cream. The Safe House will be taking residents in until 2:00 p.m. Friday.

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