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Crisis Cold Weather Shelters Keep Homeless Individuals Warm At Night

Chris Campbell

During this bitter cold snap, it’s more important than ever for the homeless to have a warm place to stay.  Four churches in Springfield are serving as “crisis cold weather shelters.” One of those is Brentwood Christian Church.  It’s offering space for couples and single men.  Other churches serve as shelters for women and men separately.

Emily Bowen-Marler, associate minister for Brentwood Christian, said people can reserve a spot in a cold weather shelter by calling Veterans Coming Home Center before 3 in the afternoon. The city of Springfield provides a bus to take those who are at the center by 7 p.m. to shelters for the night. The center has been staying open late and offering a hot meal to the homeless.

Brentwood Christian allows those with dogs if they can find another way to get there. Bowen-Marler said the Connecting Grounds church in Springfield reaches out at night to let people know about the cold weather shelters. She said due to COVID-19 restrictions, Brentwood has the capacity for only 10 people.

Nate Shlueter, with the nonprofit, Eden Village, oversees Revive 66, a campground with trailers designed to shield the unsheltered from the cold. They can be reserved through One Door, a portal of the Community Partnership of the Ozarks, or the Burrell Path Program. He said there are only five trailers currently available, but 27 more are being built.

Another crisis cold weather shelter has recently opened at the Salvation Army's Harbor House.

Since the shelters opened on October 29, they have been open 56 times, according to the Community Partnership of the Ozarks.

To contact the Veterans Coming Home Center to reserve a spot in a Springfield shelter, call (417)-866-3363.