Oklahoma City Shelters Crowded after Ice Storm

Wednesday, January 28th 2009, 4:46 pm
By: News 9

By Jon Jordan, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Oklahoma City shelters are also feeling the effects of the cold weather. Shelters like the City Rescue Mission have seen the need for their services jump dramatically over the past week.

It comes as many are finding themselves already lacking resources.

Every night, the City Rescue Mission takes in hundreds of people and provides them with a warm meal and a warm bed. But on nights with extreme cold and bad weather, beds are on short supply.

Joel Hunter was found just in time and brought to the City Rescue Mission after nearly freezing to death. He was still shaking when he spoke.

"I was out in the sleet and snow for two days and two nights," Hunter said.

Hunter is now one more on the long list of homeless seeking shelter at the mission, a list that has grown by nearly 150 since the temperatures began dropping.

"We've had to make some adjustments," Tom Jones said.

Jones runs the mission, which has already been hit hard by a decrease in donations due to the economy, and said the population increase makes things even tougher.

"We're working diligently making sure any costs that we cut back on, we're doing that so we don't go into the hole," Jones.

To handle the increase in numbers, the mission, along with other city shelters like Salvation Army, is making adjustments.

Judy Lindsey is of the fortunate ones to get a bed at the mission.

"It's just a different transition to find myself in and I'm very thankful there is a place like this," Lindsey said.

The Jesus House has also seen an increase in numbers as a result of the weather, at a time they said donations are down 75 percent from this time last year.

If you would like to help donate to any of the area shelters you can log onto our website at News9.com for more information.