After a full day of snow temperatures dropped into the low teens last night and are not expected to rise above 30 for another week. This is the kind of weather that can kill, especially if you’re living on the streets. This is why the Hope Village was created and it functioned exactly how it should. No one died at Hope Village last night.
My plan was to drive over to Hope Village to work with Matt this morning. Forget it! My car is frozen where I parked it. The entire town is a sheet of snow and ice. The phones and internet are down at the Community of Hope (check the “contact” page for current emergency/donation phone numbers), so a call direct to Matt’s cell assured me everyone had survived last nights freeze. This morning, homeless volunteers were busy outside scraping ice off of the walk ways and parking lot. Last night Pam the director of the CH opened the “day room” and people were able to sleep inside where it was heated. Others slept in tents and tipi in the Village and Rescue Mission was accepted overflow.
Late yesterday afternoon I had journeyed in my car though the fresh snow to see how the Hope Village was fairing. About night fall, after shooting some photos of snow covered tents and visiting the tipi (which felt warm inside, even without a heater) I got into my car to drive home and that’s when the panic struck. OMG, all the slushy snow on the roads was quickly turning into ice as the temperatures dropped with the setting sun and I was in a car. What a nightmare! 5 mph, slipping and sliding, people inexperienced with driving in these conditions. Flashing emergency lights everywhere. Wow, and people have to live in this. My heart ached when I thought about, as uncomfortable and frightening as my situation was – if I made it – I was going home to a house with heat in it and the homeless were not.