Warming centers opening in South Bend

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Several locations are opening up in South Bend as warming centers to keep people warm and safe in the frigid temperatures.

Hope Ministries on South Michigan Street will open up at 8 p.m. for anyone who needs a warm place to stay.

"This is our Stage One. If the temperature drops more within our guidelines, then we enter phase two at which point we'll have more centers open to accommodate more people," said Kalee Suddarth of the St. Joseph County Emergency Management Agency.

The Hope Ministries' Project Warm along with South Bend's Warm Amnesty Program provide a warm place to stay.


"Because of the extreme cold temperatures that we have here in the county and the surrounding areas, the mayors and the commissioners wanted to make sure that people that don't have a place to go actually had a place to go," said Suddarth.


Registration for beds at Hope Ministries will start at 8 p.m.


"The whole goal is to make sure that everyone that doesn't have a place to stay that night has a safe shelter," said John Brown of Hope Ministries.


Staying out in temperatures below zero overnight can be fatal.

"In times like these there's a great exposure that could basically be the end of their life. We want to provide everything that we possibly can to find a safe place so for at least during that time, they don't have to worry about a roof over their head," said Brown.

Two other centers open are the YWCA for women and children and South Bend's Center for the Homeless for men.

If any of these locations run out of room-they say they will help find other locations for people to sleep. No one will be turned away.


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