TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - With the heat indices in the triple digits this weekend, shelters in East Texas are preparing for an influx in those looking to cool off.
“We make sure our staff is ready, we make sure we have plenty of water, we make sure we have sack lunches prepared for those who come in and it’s not mealtime,” said Trevesia Chevis, social services manager for the Salvation Army in Tyler.
They understand some may want to stay the night, but some may just need to cool off for a bit.
“We have the cooling station and for those who want to come in from the heat they can do so and take advantage of our lounge or our day area here at the lodge if they want to go in and watch a tittle TV for the day,” said Chevis.
Throughout the summer, the Salvation Army gathers items in preparation for days like this weekend.
“It is inclement weather,” said Chevis. Any donations of cots, fan, water, food — any items that can assist with the increase is greatly appreciated. Any hygiene items are greatly appreciated, because those who choose not to stay with us, they still want those items."
Chevis said with donations from the community, the Salvation Army is ready to help anyone, no matter how little help they need.
“If your air conditioner is out, you don’t have to be homeless‚ you can come in from the heat," said Chevis. “If you need to come in and get a meal, if you don’t want to cook today, you can come get a meal, its hot. What I would like to say today, is anyone that wants to come in and take shelter from the heat is welcome today, we are prepared and we are ready for you.”
Chevis stressed that although the pantry part of the Salvation Army is only open Monday-Friday, if you need a fan or some water over the weekend, you can still come to the lodge and get what you need, free of charge.