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Cold weather shelters ready if needed

 

January 3, 2018 | View PDF

Christopher Andersson

Arlington Emergency Cold Weather Shelter volunteer Kathy Hammond begins unpacking items at Arlington United Church to help set up the shelter on Dec. 30.

Marysville and Arlington's cold weather shelters are open for the season whenever the temperature is forecasted to drop below freezing levels.

Arlington Emergency Cold Weather Shelter

"We're open when the forecast is for 32 degrees and below," said Deena Jones, pastor at Arlington United Church and one of the organizers of the program in Arlington.

The shelter is open from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m.

This year the churches providing space are the Immaculate Conception Church at 1200 E. 5th St., Jake's House at 18824 Smokey Point Blvd. #105 and the Smokey Point Community Church at 17721 Smokey Point Blvd.

People can find out the shelter location and if they will be open that night by calling 360-403-4674.

The shelter program began because of a local need.

"It began because there isn't any other shelter in Arlington," said Jones. "We just want them to have a safe space."

In addition to having a roof over their heads, those who come in can enjoy some food as well. "We serve dinner and breakfast," said Jones. "We give them a little food and a safe place to stay."

The shelter opened their doors in November and plan to stay open through March. They have been open 21 nights so far.

"We're seeing more people so far this year," as well, said Jones, with around 10 people a night coming in.

Jones isn't sure, however, whether the shelter is just more well known now or if there is more need this year.

"It's taken a lot of years to become established and known," she said.

The Emergency Cold Weather Shelter for Arlington is a collaboration between local church organizations.

Multiple churches from the area also help by providing volunteers. 

"We also have volunteers from many of the other churches, especially from the local Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints," said Jones.

Those who are interested in volunteering can call 360-435-3259 for more information.

Marysville Emergency Cold Weather Shelter

The local Marysville shelter is also open on days when the forecast calls for temperatures of 32 degrees or below during the night.

The program provides a place to stay the night, from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m., along with food.

This year the shelter moved to the Damascus Road Church at 4011 81st Pl. NE.

"The new location is much better than the last one," said Zoe Wlazlak, director of the shelter. "It stays really warm throughout the night, which is obviously important."

Wlazlak said the shelter program is going well this year.

"We're open a lot more than usual so far," she said. The shelter has been open a total of 16 times as of Dec. 22, which is half as much as the total amount of times as last year.

They also have more people coming in, said Wlazlak.

The shelter is meant to provide safety to local homeless individuals.

"We don't want anyone to freeze to death on the streets of Marysville," said Wlazlak.

Food is also provided at the shelter when they are open.

"We serve a big dinner and a small breakfast," said Wlazlak, who also notes that the Salvation Army opens shortly after and serve a large breakfast for those who come in.

This year they are "seeing more volunteer involvement" for the shelter, said Wlazlak, however she added that they are always looking for more volunteers to help with the operation.

Those interested in volunteering can call Wlazlak at 530-913-0995 for more information.

More information about the shelter is also available at marysvilleecws.org. Those who want to learn if the shelter is open can visit their Facebook page, call 211 or call Wlazlak at 530-913-0995.

 

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