More homeless turn to shelters as temperatures continue to drop - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

More homeless turn to shelters as temperatures continue to drop

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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WSHM) -

With a freeze warning in effect Friday night through Saturday morning, many homeless people are turning to area shelters for help.

"Being on the street even for one night is hard, it gets really cold and you don't have anything at all," said Devorah Gonzalez.

Gonzalez knows firsthand what it's like to have to spend a night on the streets. She's been in and out of the Friends of the Homeless Shelter for years and says as the temperatures continue to drop she's feeling very fortunate to have somewhere to go.

"It's nice to have a roof over your head that you know that you can come back to," said Gonzalez.

And, many others like Gonzalez are turning to area shelters for help.

"It's very important for the homeless, you know, people who have nowhere to go," said Willie Davila.

In fact, as we begin to head into the winter months, Friends of the Homeless officials say that they're already over capacity.

"We are so crowded," said Friends of the Homeless Executive Director Bill Miller. "Frankly we have people sleeping on the floor."

Right now around 160 to 165 people a night are staying at the shelter.

"It is getting more full so we are concerned about that," said Miller.

Miller says that their plan is to continue to try and get people out of the shelter and back on the feet.

"Instead of looking for more shelter beds we are going to keep emphasizing that people need to get up and move out of shelter," said Miller. "We're going to house people as quickly as we can."

Over the past year Friends of the Homeless has helped 170 people find housing.

"It's nice that this place exists and people don't really have to worry too much about finding a place to stay," said Gonzalez.

Friends of the Homeless provides emergency shelters on Worthington Street every night and serves three meals a day, seven days a week.

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