Homeless facilities in Rapid City see more visitors as the weather cools off

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — As the weather starts getting colder at night, more people are making their way to homeless shelters.

From a pair of socks to a warm blanket, the Hope Center in Rapid City is taking donations before the cold weather sets in.

“Coats, jackets, sweatshirts, gloves, socks is always a need here at the Hope Center,” Timm said.

Since opening the facility a decade ago, Director Melanie Timm says she has seen the number of visitors rise every year.

“So in the beginning 10 years ago when the Hope Center started, a busy day would be about 20 people coming through the door for services and we have far exceeded that,” Timm said.

Now, the facility sees at least 200 people a day.

Multiple homeless service facilities here in town have reported to the City of Rapid City that they are seeing more and more visitors using their services.

“So we know that our homeless issue continues to be an overall issue for the community, and one that we need to address,” Darrell Shoemaker, Communications for City of Rapid City, said.

There are ways that you can help.. Including volunteering your time at shelters, donating supplies, or donating money to one of the many homeless facilities in town.

“Rather than, trying to address a panhandler one-on-one, it’s providing resources to those service organizations that will be able to meet the need,” Shoemaker said.

A need that will grow as the temperature drops.

Law enforcement also plays a big role in addressing the homelessness issue in Rapid City. Mayor Steve Allender has proposed an initiative to bring in more officers to help mediate the high number of calls the Police Department gets every day.

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