A 2016 study shows more than 400 homeless people live in Erie.
While several organizations offer up space during the winter, many of those services don’t start for a few more weeks.
That means hundreds of people could be out on the streets in freezing temperatures, risking not only their general safety but their health as well.
That’s why the Upper Room on Peach Street gives people a place to stay from 5 p.m. through 11 p.m.
At that point they can cross the street and seek shelter at the Mental Health Association.
The manager said if it weren’t for these resources, people are at risk of hypothermia and even death.
“It’s mostly younger people now that don’t have a place to live for whatever reason. You know, we get mentally ill people and people with drug addictions you know the people that just not making it in life,” said Ron Cooley, the Upper Room Manager.