Local shelters prepared for large crowds ahead of winter storm

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO)- A severe winter storm watch is in effect for the Stateline area. For many, the ice and snow means the need to find a warm place to stay dry. Rockford shelters are prepared to help the city’s most vulnerable.

“With the weather that is coming up, we definitely see an increase with people that are coming in to warm up, as well as people who are coming for shelter and food,” said Crystal Savage, Director of Marketing and Communications for the Rockford Rescue Mission.

At the Rockford Rescue Mission, nobody is turned away.

“Even if our beds and our bunks are full, we do have mats that we’re able to put on the floor,” Savage said. “That way, everyone has a safe place to stay, so anybody in Rockford who is looking to get out of the elements are able to come and sleep at Rockford Rescue Mission.”

Joshua Plummer is a resident at the Rockford Rescue Mission. He encourages anyone who needs help, to ask for it.

“People have to understand it’s okay. If you’re in a desperate, despair situation, come here. Come down here,” Plummer said. “We take care of our own. That’s our motto, I like to say.”

At SecondFirst Church, the Overnight Cafe was reopened on January 6th.

It was created last year to help people escape the extreme cold. Guests can take showers, eat, and do some laundry- while staying out of the ice and snow.

“If you’re walking, and it’s a half an inch of ice that they’re saying we’re going to get, that’s awful,” said Becky Erbe, Associate Pastor at SecondFirst Church. “And that gets into your clothes, you get wet, it gets into your body, your bones, and we want to make sure everyone knows they can come here and be safe.”

The Overnight Cafe will be open every night through March 1st.

“We really want to gather the people that have been pushed into the margins of society and gather them in here and tell them that they have a home, said Rebecca White Newgren, Senior Pastor at SecondFirst Church. “A place where they can be safe, and warm, and get out of these crazy winter elements.”

SecondFirst Church is currently in urgent need of sugar, coffee creamer, bottles of water, and soup.

Rockford Rescue Mission’s list of urgents needs can be found here.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News Video

Trending Stories