This week below normal temperatures are expected. This means its time to bring out that coat and drink a warm cup of coffee. That may be the case for most people, but the homeless community is facing some challenges this winter season.
"You and I being in cold weather we deal with it knowing that at some point we'll be able to be warm again," said John Meza of Tacos not Bombs. Get a hot cup of coffee, post caldo selfies on Facebook. But these people who are out on the streets all day every day well they're going to be cold all day every day,"
Aside from the cold temperatures, there is also another challenge the homeless population is facing this winter season.
"The shelters, they usually expand their capacity so they are able to take in more people but because of COVID and the pandemic, those numbers they have to keep them low because of social distancing and spacing and so forth, so now it's going to be even harder," said Meza.
Without fail, Tacos not Bombs continues to help no matter the circumstances. Every Sunday they provide a free meal at Artesian Park.
This is for a community of an estimated 850 homeless people. According to the Point-In-Time Count that is almost double of the 2019 count.
Another organization providing services for the homeless community is Mission 911. When it gets cold, the non-profit serves up a cup of coffee and lays out a wardrobe.
Clothing for men, women, and children are provided to help the homeless prepare for the cold weather.
"Our first customer this morning, she got a few pairs of pants, three pairs of pants, three to four shirts maybe a pair of shoes. If they need blankets," said Diana Pena, a volunteer for the Mission 911.
Mission 911 is currently in need of donations which can be dropped off at the front office located at, 911 Park Avenue. They are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m..