Savannah shelter extending hours in preparation for cold weather

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - While most of us are working to keep ourselves and our families out of the cold, there is still a way to help those who don't have a home.

The Savannah City Night Shelter is extending its hours and services to make sure everyone is warm Tuesday night.

Officials say they're doing things they don't normally do, like staying open right now. Usually, they have people leave by 8 a.m., but that's not the case because of the cold weather.

"All of the shelters in the city will have what we call cold nights and we will allow them in whether or not they have proper identification, so it's just a matter of them going to the facility and telling them that they need shelter," said Executive Director, Yvonne Pryor.

Pryor says folks normally wouldn't be allowed in without an id, but they're lowering those barriers. One man says he's so thankful for them.

"It's pretty hard to stay warm. You can put on layers and layers, but when the temperature drops and the wind is blowing, the windchill factor, it just goes through you. It hits you to the bone. It's terrifying. It makes me feel as though if I didn't have a place like Inner City Night Shelter, I would probably be dead or frozen. It's the first time in my life that I've felt like someone is concerned about people."

The shelter had a packed house Monday night, and they are expecting the same for Tuesday. Their cap is 75 people, but if they get more than that, they can find extra room. Pryor says it's about serving the community.

"7 p.m. is the cutoff time for coming in, but not really during the cold months. We will take you past 7 p.m., but you have to know that it's going to be first come, first serve."

If you're at home and looking for a way to help, officials say they don't typically serve breakfast, but because they have extended their hours, they would love any donation Tuesday morning, such as breakfast sandwiches or sugar for their coffee pot.

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