ROCKFORD (WIFR) – The frigid temperatures can make even the most basic tasks hard, however next time we complain about having to scrap snow off our cars, employees at the Rockford Rescue Mission say we need to remember those living on the streets.
Diana Dubanski is brought to tears over the chance of having a warm place to sleep and says she can’t imagine what life would be like out on the streets in the brutally cold weather.
“We probably would be sleeping in the park, under a tent, in abandoned buildings, if it wasn’t for this place.
Dubanski has been living at the Women’s Crisis Center for the past 5 months and will probably stay for the rest of the winter. Shelter employees say they’ve seen an increase in guests this season compared to last. Organizers say in just the last three months, nearly 7,000 people came to the center and the Rockford Rescue Mission for help.
“These people take us in and they don’t know us from Adam and they love us.”
“Full time case managers that are getting with 100% of the people that are with us to make sure they’re here, what it took to get them here and what it’s going to take to get them back on their feet,” said Director of Development, Chris Eldridge.
Eldridge says the shelter has provided more than 26,000 meals in the last two months. That number is only going to rise as the temperature drops.
The shelter says they’ve seen a significant increase in single parent fathers and young adults this year. The shelter is expected to help more than 3,000 people in December, up 10% from last year.