LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW)—The La Crosse Warming Center, run by Catholic Charities, opens on November 1 until March 31.
Last year, 113 different people came to the center, totaling 1975 nights over the five month period they were open.
The center allows 15 adult men and women to come in out of the cold and simply get a good nights sleep.
It's located on the lower level of First Baptist Church, on the corner of West Avenue and Main Street.
They open their doors at 9 p.m. and everyone must leave by 7 a.m.
Unlike some other area shelters, the center is open to all adults, including people suffering from mental health or addiction problems as long as they are acting calm and respectful.
"Well, we have had people freeze to death other winters. Last year I know we did not. So if we can save one person from that then this is well worth the time and effort to do this," Mary Fitzpatrick, La Crosse Warming Center Director said.
The center is run entirely by volunteers and they still need some help this coming winter.
Intake volunteers help the residents get checked in, between 8:30 p.m.- 10:00 p.m., and make sure all guests understand the rules; hospitality volunteers sit at the center for a shift, 9:00 p.m. -2:00 a.m., 2 a.m. – 7:00 a.m. or all night, just to make sure everything is ok.
The Warming Center relies on donations to keep them open; they are seeking monetary donations as well as coffee, sugar, cups, paper plates, napkins, utensils, cleaning supplies and quick breakfast items like cereal bars, pop tarts and fruit.
For more information on how to volunteer or donate contact Catholic Charities at 608-782-0710 ext. 220 or click here.
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