HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – A warming shelter will be open to the public at Mt. Tom Masonic Lodge in Holyoke Wednesday into Thursday morning due to the frigid temperatures.
The pop-up warming shelter is open after an agreement between the City of Holyoke and the Mount Tom Masonic Lodge. The shelter is located on 235 Chestnut Street in Holyoke and will be open for any residents in-need from 4 p.m. on Wednesday to 9 p.m. on Thursday.
Get ready for the chill to return Wednesday. The single digits and the teens in the morning will feel like near zero due to a breeze. Dress warmly. It will be sunny, but highs will still only reach the low 20s. With that moderate breeze that’ll feel like 10 degrees during the warmest part of the day.
Due to the spread of COVID-19, masks and social distancing is required. Masks are available to those in need. Residents will only have access to the dining hall and restroom. Alcohol or drug use in the shelter is prohibited.
The shelter provides a warm space, bedding, dry clothing, PPE, food and coffee to those in need with staff trained in both addiction and homeless services.
The shelter opened for the first time on Friday and has served nearly 30 homeless people a place to keep warm.
According to Michael Moriarty, Executive Director of OneHolyoke CDC, “This pop-up has demonstrated greater need than expected. The capacity of the partnership to make Holyoke a safer and healthier community during some of the most dangerously cold winter days has been revealed, and we will collectively provide another pop-up warming shelter on Wednesday with the expected upcoming wind chill event.”
The team who helped organize the pop-up shelter includes:
- Mayor Joshua Garcia
- City of Holyoke Emergency Management Director Jeff Trask
- OneHolyoke CDC Executive Director Michael Moriarty
- Theresa Nicholson of Center for Human Development
- Matt Peterson of Mt. Tom Masonic Lodge
The team who helped assist includes:
- Holyoke Fire Department
- Holyoke Police Department
- Holyoke Health Center
- Holyoke Medical Center
- Behavioral Health Network
- R&S Cleaning Service
- Iglesia Rescatando Las Ovejas Perdidas Inc.
- Capri Pizza
- Domino’s Pizza
- Ocean State Job Lot