Cold Weather Causes Influx at Texoma Homeless Shelters

- The cold weather had Texoma's homeless heading to Faith Mission and Faith Refuge for Women.

Faith Mission's noon chapel service was fairly packed. Many here spent the night like Brooks Blake.

"I don't know anybody in Wichita Falls.  I'm from Baltimore so I really don't know anybody here.  So, I'd probably be on the streets frozen somewhere or hospital," Blake says.

When temperatures go down the number of people turning to Faith Mission goes up but shelter officials say despite the winter front that blew in so far they have not catered to a record crowd this time.

"Our high was actually on November 12th.  That was the first cold weather day.  That was 99.  It was 96 here last night," says Vicky Payne, marketing director at Faith Mission.

Shelter officials say they're preparing to house an even larger crowd this weekend when another blast of winter weather arrives.

"There's no reason for them to sleep outside, in their car on on the streets.  We do have safe shelters.  We have Faith Mission for men and families-- husband, wives and children and we have Faith Refuge for women and children. So there is a place," Payne says.

A place to sleep but also to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as get necessities including warm weather clothing.

At Faith Refuge, shelter officials say 60 women and children spent the night there compared to 67 who stayed there when temperatures dropped on November 12th. And officials say both shelters are in need of heavy coats, gloves and thermal wear for men, women and children.

To donate, call Faith Mission at 940-723-5663 or Faith Refuge at 940-322-HOPE.

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