Lincoln nonprofits help people keep warm on ‘dangerously cold’ day

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — Staying outside in below zero temperatures is dangerous and can lead to frostbite and hypothermia.

With that in mind, Matt Talbot Kitchen & Outreach at 2121 N. 27th St. extended its hours to offer a warming center for anyone who wanted to stop by, warm up and enjoy a hot meal.

Homeless diversion specialist Amanda Owen-Doerr said it’s imperative to quickly shift gears to meet the needs of the community.

“It’s so dangerously cold outside that people need a place to kind of come warm up, a nice environment for them to come and hang out in, if they are unsheltered, it’s incredibly important that we have a warming center like we have here,” she said.

Across town at the People’s City Mission, Pastor Tom Barber said he has seen an uptick in the number of people who need shelter from the cold.

Currently, 240 people are being housed; those numbers demand a kitchen staff that works efficiently to feed anyone in need of a hot meal.

“I understand that it’s a large amount of people, it’s a lot of intensity, but we all work together,” chef supervisor De’Sean Ross said. “We’re very cohesively with what we do here; everybody knows their position, and we bang it out.”

Owen-Doerr had one final message for anyone looking to quickly warm up in these frigid conditions: “Just walk in the front door.”

“Everyone’s welcome,” she said. “We’d love to see anyone who needs to be here for the day. We also are always grateful for donations of blankets, warm winter clothing, coats and things like that.”

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