When the temperatures go below zero, more than 6,000 homeless in the metro don’t have the supplies they need to stay warm.
Eric Woolson works at St. Vincent of DePaul . He’s seen a decrease in winter coat donations.
“It really is a need that we`ve seen year in and year out of course, there is always a need year round but that need is more urgent of coarse in the winter.”
But the cold snap has the Central Iowa Shelter putting together homeless kits for those in need. The kits carry essentials like soap, toothpaste, and socks. People are encouraged to put a kit in their car to hand out when they see someone the street.
“It’s not a common thing. You see someone who’s homeless and we usually give them money or we do ignore them. This is something that forces you to interact and maybe gets you out of your comfort zone a little bit which is something we can work on, “said Amy Olson of the Central Iowa Shelter.
The shelter has seen an increase in traffic during the colder months. The kits are free and can be picked up at the Central Iowa Shelter.
The City of Des Moines is also preparing to evict a group of homeless people who’ve set up camp on city-owned land. The city is handing out fliers to those living around the West MLK Bridge near downtown. The flier says the city will begin removing all people and property from the area Tuesday, January 29.