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Waco shelter braces for winter storm

Posted at 5:49 PM, Jan 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-09 18:49:31-05

WACO, Texas — As Central Texas braces for the possibility of snow, one Waco organization is working to make sure the city's homeless population is not left in the cold.

My Brother's Keeper, a shelter run by Mission Waco, has around 30 beds available in its main building, with additional overflow space available at the Meyer Center a couple blocks away.

"When it gets cold, like it's going to be cold tonight and probably the next few days, we turn the emergency shelter into a 24/7 facility," Executive Director of Mission Waco John Calaway said.

"You gotta help people some times," said Gerald Holmes, who is staying in the shelter this weekend. "Not everybody can move and has a body as able or mind as able. So, it's good to help people because nobody should be on the street while it's cold."

Holmes said he is transitioning between housing opportunities and is thankful for a place to keep warm during the winter storm.

"This is a good place," he said. "You can relax and get peace of mind. You don't have to worry about getting cold at nighttime. So, I feel like believe it or not, this place is doing the most good."

As they deal with a surge in residents, however, Mission Waco is still fighting to ensure they maintain COVID-19 protocols by spreading out bunks and requiring masks inside.

"That's not changed much. It's just the number of people we're able to sleep is significantly less than it usually is," Calaway said.

Mission Waco is always looking for donations of money, clothes or blankets, as they work to serve those in need. Donations can be made here.