VRM extends hours at men’s and women’s shelter to help homeless stay warm from the cold

@TheSunGazette

VISALIA – With nighttime temperatures consistently dipping into the 20s, there is a major risk of homeless people suffering from illnesses related to prolonged exposure to cold weather. Hypothermia can occur in temperatures as high as 40˚F without the proper clothing.

But there is one place in Visalia where anyone can go to get out of the cold. The City of Visalia is reminding residents that the Visalia Rescue Mission (VRM) is open as a warming center. VRM offers both a men’s shelter, as well as the Shelter of Hope for women and children (boys 12 and under).

Additionally, VRM will provide an additional warming center space at both shelter locations when the temperature is expected to be 40˚F or below. Each morning when temperatures remain at 34˚F or below, guests are able to stay until 9 a.m.

For the safety of its guests and staff, VRM maintains a drug and alcohol-free environment. Anyone under the influence of drugs or alcohol, whose behavior is a danger to others, may not be able to utilize the facility.

Shelter of Hope (for women and children — girls 17 and under/boys 12 and under) is located at 1413 N. Burke St. in Visalia. Check-in time is 4 p.m. daily. For more information, call 559-734-7921.

Men’s Shelter and Community Kitchen (serving breakfast and dinner daily) is located at 322 NE 1st Ave. in Visalia. Check-in time is 6 p.m. daily. For more information, call 559-740-4178.

The morning warming center is located at 415 NE 1st Ave. in Visalia.

For those with special needs, please contact 2-1-1 Tulare County. If you are able to donate winter items such as blankets and sleeping bags, please contact VRM directly: 559-740-4178 or by email at [email protected].

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