FORT MYERS, Fla. - As the temperatures drop, local shelters are opening their doors to people in need of a warm place to sleep.
Imagine pulling out your license or ID card and every day, getting the painful reminder of your address: "homeless." That's what Damon Cobb's says.
“I usually stay out on the street and I have nowhere else to stay,” Cobb said. “I needed someplace warm and I was very, very, very cold.” Cobb was one of about 15 taking refuge in the Salvation Army's Red Shield lodge.
“It was terrible this morning and it's been miserable all afternoon. Just trying to find a place to stay away from the wind,” Frank Reese said.
A warm meal and a pair of gloves was instantly enough to brighten Reese's night. “Would you rather have these or would you rather have these? That's what I need,” he said, showing off his thick, insulated gloves.
While the Salvation Army normally hosts women and children in its residential building, it opens its emergency shelter to men once the Lee Emergency Operations Center calls for temperatures and wind chills below 40.
“We have a lot of folks who come in and they eat the meal with us, and we invite them to stay, but they choose not to, so we definitely give a blanket and a jacket and anything warm we can to those folks,” Megan Spears of the Salvation Army said.
Even for the toughest of men, temperatures in the 30s are too much. But the generosity of the community and organizations like this, literally warm their hearts.
“I walked in one night, I had a jacket like this on and it was cold out, and I was sitting here shivering,” Reese said. “She came out with a ski jacket from up north. I put that on, ate that dinner, and to this day, I still have that ski jacket.”
Thanks to your generosity, the Salvation Army had plenty of warm blankets and clothing to pass out. However there are a few things they could still use: