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Severe Weather Shelter Network helps homeless on the coldest nights in Jefferson & Arapahoe counties

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Posted at 4:30 AM, Oct 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-09 06:30:02-04

DENVER — When the temperature drops, the volunteers with the Severe Weather Shelter Network open churches to shelter people living on the streets.

"Thirty-two degrees and wet, or 20 degrees and dry — that's what initiates the emergency shelter," explained Christy Smith, the assistant director of the Severe Weather Shelter Network. "We provide emergency overnight shelter for those folks living on streets. Our main purpose is to save lives."

The network opens three shelters in Jefferson County and western Arapahoe County on nights when it's life-threateningly cold.

"The weather can get very, very cold in Colorado. It's not uncommon to have frostbite set in," Smith said. "We bring these friends in that are homeless, we provide them with ameal, and a warm, safe place to stay for the night."

The Severe Weather Shelter Network needs volunteers to help run the shelters, drive people and stay overnight. Learn more about how to volunteer here.

"Working with these people has actually done more for me than I've done for them," Smith said.