ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO)- As much of the Stateline enters a Winter Weather Advisory, one local non-profit asks the community for help.
Mike Hedrick is the Supervisor of Men’s Programs for the Rockford Rescue Mission. He says that last year, they served an average of 155 people each night, but unseasonably cold temperatures mean their are more people lining up at their doors.
“We’re going to see a lot more people than we did last year, just because some people don’t come in until it gets cold,” Hedrick said.
Since they’ve seen more people than expected at this time in the year, there is a greater need for donations. While any donations are welcome, the mission especially needs winter gear, including coats, gloves, and boots.
“For us, it’s critical. We have men, women, and children at the mission with nowhere else to go,” Hedrick says. “And if we’re unable to do what we do, they’ll be sleeping on the streets, they’ll be under bridges, and we don’t want to see anybody out in the cold.”
Ronnie Ward is a resident at the mission. He’s grateful that there is a place in Rockford that people can go to escape the cold.
“I’ve never seen cold weather like this, but the mission here gives you a good place to lay your head down, a good warm place,” Ward said. “Feeds you, clothes you. I see a lot of guys struggling out there with the cold weather.”
Donations to the mission can be dropped off at the mission’s location at 715 W State St. location Monday through Friday from 8:00AM until 4:30PM.