The Hope Center usually holds 150 men each night, with the dropping temperatures it’s averaging 250. That’s the norm for emergency shelters in Lexington.
Despite being over capacity and running low on supplies shelters say they aren’t turning anyone away.
The Hope Center even had workers out Monday night on ‘cold patrol’ looking for people to bring in from the cold.
“The wind has kind of died down and I think that gives somebody a false sense of being safer and it's not,” said Chuck Gilliam while he was on “cold patrol” for The Hope Center. “It's just too cold.”
The Catholic Action Center too has been over capacity since the cold spell started.
“People just are crowded, and they're not enough places for people to and really have a nice sleep,” said Ginny Ramsey with The Catholic Action Center.
To ease tight space, The Community Action Council opened a temporary shelter which sleeps about 30 people.
“So everybody has an opportunity to lay their heads down, have good food, and so it's been great,” said Malcolm Ratchford, executive director for The Community Action Council.
Women and children are already sleeping in the lobby at The Salvation Army. The Salvation Army said they didn’t want to split up families but they’re expecting even more.
“It's unfortunate but all of our beds are full, all of our rooms are full, but we won't turn anyone away,” said Townsend Miller with The Salvation Army.
Miller said The Salvation Army is trying to re-stock their food pantry for when heating bills arrive.
“We'll have a lot of families in the community who are going to have to choose whether they're going to pay their electric bill or be able to feed their family,” said Miller.
Resources are stretched thin everywhere and shelters are asking the community for help.
“Anybody who does have extra we're got to keep everyone bundled up because winter's not over yet,” said Ramsey.
Salvation Army: bread, pasta, canned meat, peanut butter, twin sheets, hats and gloves
Community Action Council: socks, trash bags, gloves and personal hygiene products
The Hope Center: gloves, hats and towels
If someone outside needs to be picked up and brought inside call The Hope Center at (859) 252-7881.
Catholic Action Center: coffee, sugar, creamer, blankets and cleaning supplies.