South Snohomish County Emergency Cold Weather Shelter is the March Cause of the month. The South Snohomish County Emergency Cold Weather Shelter is a volunteer run organization that provides a warm place to sleep and a hot meal to anyone when nights are cold. They provide homeless individuals with safety, warmth, a full stomach and most of all, hospitality and compassion. The shelter location has moved many times in its short history but has found a wonderful home at Maple Park Church in Lynnwood.
How the shelter works
- Shelter opens on nights with weather below 35 degrees
- Guests may arrive by car and parking is available
- Guests may be dropped off by police, ambulance, taxi, or a friend BUT the vehicle driver must check in personally
- Walk ins are not permitted
- Anyone with non-prescription drugs, alcohol, or drug paraphernalia will not be allowed in
The Cold Weather Shelter provides a critical service to the homeless community in South Snohomish County. This year they experienced a significant increase in demand. As of December 6, 2022 they needed to be open 13 nights. They served 166 total bed nights which equals an average of 12.8 guests per night. For context, in 2021 at this same time, they were open for only 2 nights, with a total of 10 bed nights. For the entire season for 2021-22 they were open 30 nights total between November 1 – March 31 with a total of 312 bed nights.
The majority of the labor and expenses are provided by volunteers and partner organizations. While this has worked in the past, the safe operating constraints imposed by Covid and the unanticipated demand due to increased cold weather openings is exceeding their financial capacity. Therefore the funds collected this month will go directly into the operating budget to cover paying 2 staff members to remain overnight during each opening and to provide skilled janitorial service each morning to counter infection transmission.
As always, thank you for your generous donations.
If you have an organization that you wish to nominate for Sunday cause of the month, we invite you to fill out the online Sunday Cause nomination form.