SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WWLP) – It’s a new year and a new decade, but the number of homeless people in Springfield continues to increase.
Homelessness is an even bigger problem during the winter because of frigid weather conditions. There are between 1200 and 1400 people who are homeless in Springfield.
The Federal Government tracks the number of homeless people by taking a count on the same night in January every year.
The Springfield Rescue Mission is one resource homeless people can turn to, to stay fed and warm throughout the winter.
“It’s harsh, winter you can get frostbite. You just got to find shelter. They do feed you here. It’s hard but if you’re hard-willed you’ll make it.”– Mark LaFrance, Homeless, Springfield
The Springfield Rescue Mission provides food and clothing to the homeless in the streets during the winter, and at their emergency shelter on Taylor Street.
“We distribute foods, clothing, and especially socks in the cold weather. We tell them you know, listen if you want to come inside there’s a place for you at the Springfield Rescue Mission.”Miguel Cabrera: Program Coordinator, Springfield Rescue Mission
If it’s dangerously cold outside, Cabrera said they’ll find a way to accommodate homeless people at their shelter, even if there are no beds available.