Pinellas County shelters are in dire need of supplies as the record-breaking cold continues.
The shelters have already been open five days this year: Saturday through Wednesday. Weather forecasters are predicting even colder temperatures for the weekend.
The shelters open when the temperature is expected to drop to 40 degrees or below.
Items desperately needed include food, coffee, disposable dinnerware (plates, napkins, forks, etc.), money and gift certificates to grocery stores. Warm clothing, such as jackets (for men), gloves, and hats are also needed.
Shelters open to those in need between 6 and 6:30 p.m. and close the following morning at about 6 a.m.
Shelter guests are provided with a hot evening meal, a warm safe place to spend the night and breakfast the following morning. Volunteers work throughout the night in order for the shelters to remain open.
“The extended cold weather has stressed supplies at the shelters, which are now in a serious position of running out,” officials said.
Supplies may be dropped off at the Pinellas County Coalition for the Homeless office, or brought directly to the closest cold weather shelter.
Monetary donations should be made to the Pinellas County Coalition for the Homeless and can be made through the website www.pinellashomeless.org or by check sent to the organization at 5180 62nd Ave. N. in Pinellas Park, FL 33781. The phone number of the Coalition is 727-528-5763.
The shelters are used by homeless residents seeking a warm place to stay.
The network of cold weather shelters is operated by churches and non-profit organizations and staffed primarily by volunteers.
With the current economic crisis, budgets have been cut and many more people have become homeless, creating an even greater challenge this winter.
For more information, contact Michael Amidei at 727-543-2600, Cliff Smith at 727-464-8448 or Sarah Snyder at 727-424-1355.
Cold Night Shelters
Adult men and women
- St. Timothy’s Lutheran Church, 812 E. Tarpon Ave., Tarpon Springs. Coordinator: Henry & Benita Wellman. Capacity: 50
- St Cecelia Catholic Church, 820 Jasmine Way, Clearwater. Coordinator: Fran Messick Associate Coordinator: Dan Mettee. Capacity: 100
- The Turning Point, 1801 Fifth Ave. N., St. Petersburg. Coordinator: Katrina Tucker. Capacity: 25
- Salvation Army, 1400 Fourth St. S., St. Petersburg. Coordinator: Rod Bayshore. Capacity: 25
- Boys & Girls Club of the Suncoast in Pinellas Park, 7790 61st St. N., Pinellas Park.Coordinator: Jim Leiby. Capacity: 300.
Families with children
- First United Methodist Church of Clearwater, 411 Turner St., Clearwater. Coordinator: Lewis Hill. Capacity: two families.
- Northwest Presbyterian Church, 6330 54th Ave. N., St. Petersburg. Coordinator: Jim Lieby. Capacity: four families