MINNEAPOLIS -- As the temperature continues to plummet throughout Minnesota, local shelters are reporting a jump in the number of people seeking out warmth and a hot meal.
"We're still seeing numbers greater than what we had last year at this time," said Dominick Bouza, Operations Director at the Salvation Army Harbor Light, a Downtown Minneapolis shelter that accommodates as many as 500 people each night.
Bouza said the number of people needing the shelter's services has jumped 15 percent, this year over last.
"We don't turn people away. So any spot we can find for folks, we will," Bouza said.
The Salvation Army shelter is hardly alone in meeting the growing demand.
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The Simpson Housing Services addresses homelessness on several levels, including those looking for transitional housing and those seeking a longer-term housing solution. Julie Manworren, the Executive Director of the agency, said they're seeing an exponential jump in the number of people wanting to participate in a weekly lottery for transitional housing help.
"We would receive 30 families calling three years ago. Today we have about 120 to 130 every week. And that's if we have an opening," Manworren said.
Both agencies said they welcome the assistance of volunteers. If you're interested in helping the Simpson Housing Services or The Salvation Army Harbor Light, you can check out their websites, at: www.simpsonhousing.org or http://www.usc.salvationarmy.org/usc/www_usc_minneapolisHL.nsf
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