$25,000 Needed for ‘Bad Weather Shelter’ to Help Homeless

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For those looking to lend a helping hand during the winter months, the Bad Weather Shelter operated by Pasadena-based Friends In Deed is happy to get help making sure local homeless residents have reprieve from harsh nights.
The shelter, which opens for the night as the weather report dictates, could use two things right now: money to run the shelter and disposable supplies, such as plates and utensils, to help feed clients. The organization asks for locals to give whatever they can afford and hopes to raise approximately $25,000 for its potential operations.
“The cost to run this shelter each night is about $1,800-$1,900,” said Dr. Richard Cheung, board president for Friends In Deed, which was founded in 1894 in Pasadena and is 123 years old. “That’s including staff and insurance and everything else. That would be amazing to get some people to ‘sponsor’ a night.”
Normally, the Bad Weather Shelter is ready for action the day after Thanksgiving and is on-call through March 1. However, a number of factors delayed that start day to Jan. 4 this season, including favorable weather forecasts and concerns about the hepatitis A outbreak among homeless encampments.
As a result of the latter, volunteers will be required to obtain a vaccination before they can work at the shelter.
Those volunteer groups — usually around 10-15 people — sign up to essentially be on call for a night in the event the weather forecast has temperatures falling below 40 degrees at night or has at least a 40% chance of rain. Clients sign in at the shelter and volunteers cook dinner for the evening and set up cots for sleeping.
This year, volunteers will make use of disposable plates and utensils.
At the moment, the biggest things needed are going to be those disposable three-section plates, forks, spoons, knives, bowls, latex gloves,” said Friends In Deed Executive Director Joshua Grater. “These are things that won’t go bad, so we can use them next season.”
Grater said the cot capacity at the shelter, which is in Pasadena Covenant Church, is 140. In a normal winter season, there are usually about 70 clients when the shelter is open, although there were often more than 80 during last year’s rainy winter.
“The Pasadena Covenant Church has been an amazing partner for the Bad Weather Shelter,” Cheung said. “We couldn’t do it without them, their leadership and their passionate people in their congregation.”
For more information or to contact Friends In Deed, visit friendsindeedpas.org.

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