Wed February 2, 2011

Homeless Shelters Step up Capacity, Services as Temperatures Plunge

Plunging temperatures are pushing many homeless shelters to capacity along the Front Range. And some communities are kicking overflow shelters into high gear.

With Fort Collins’ two homeless shelters maxed out, Monday night brought record attendance of 33 at its emergency winter night shelter. Meantime, day programs that provide warm meals and shelter are also attracting more.

“What we’re seeing is the cold weather is bringing more, perhaps the hidden people, the people we don’t see every day,” said Glenn Good, regional director for Catholic Charities, which runs an overnight shelter and daytime program in Fort Collins.

In the Denver metro area, three additional shelters have been set up to accommodate overflow during the winter months. This week, shelters in the city are extending their normal street outreach hours to make sure everyone has a warm place to sleep.