SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Organizations are preparing for Nov. 1, the day cold weather shelters start opening for the winter season.
During a Solutions for Shelter Summit Thursday, Springfield organizations brainstormed ideas on expanding shelter access every night during the winter.
Officials with Community Partnership of the Ozarks said shelters usually open based on overnight temperatures during the winter months.
CPO Continuum of Care Coordinator Amanda Stadler said the pandemic has shown people need help all the time.
“Having additional larger host sites, expanding our number of volunteers and then transportation assistance,” Stadler said.
Stadler said social distancing guidelines will still be in place for those coming into the shelter. She said that means fewer people are allowed in shelters, and more spaces are needed.
She said shelters last year helped serve an average of 80 people per night.
“Our goal, I think, would be to have about 150 beds available in some capacity across the season,” Stadler said.
Additional discussions on this topic will be held next week.
On Sept. 14, there will be a volunteer discussion.
There will also be a transportation discussion on Sept. 16. Both start at noon.
CPO said that people are welcome to attend any of the sessions. To register, click here. www.bit.ly/3t1jBTO
Officials said the O’Reilly Center for Hope will be available for those who need access to a computer to participate in the summit.