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Warming center opens

Anyone without a home  this weekend will have somewhere warm to stay when temperatures drop below 40 degrees.

The LaGrange-Troup County Homeless Coalition Warming Center will be open during the weekend through Saturday night. 

“We open up when the weather sustains 37 degrees or below,” said New Ventures CEO Mike Wilson. “Law enforcement will give anyone who calls and says they’re homeless a ride to the warming center. The LaGrange Housing Authority runs a bus line through West Georgia Star, which their bus line runs around during the evenings and will take people back to their respective locations the following morning.”

The warming center offers not only a place warm and safe to sleep, but hot food and a hot shower to those in need. 

Wilson estimated that there are 100 people without homes in LaGrange. During the 2018 winter season, Wilson said they filled 359 beds.

“This will be the fourth year it will be operated at New Ventures,” Wilson said. “To keep track of when it is open, look at the LaGrange-Troup County Homeless Coalition Facebook page.”

There are also signs posted in the community stating if they are open. Those needing to stay at the center can self-check-in from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. but will need a police escort afterwards. 

The center is also in need of volunteers and donations. 

There are three shifts available for volunteer work when the warming center is open. 

  • 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. is check in for guests
  • 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. is check in and assisting with meals 
  • 9:30 p.m. to 8 a.m. is overnight stay assisting with guests when needed. 

Wilson said the center is also in need of canned goods, drinks, towels, wash cloths and monetary donations. 

“I have on my desk $2 right now from a lady in 1970 that gave me half everything she had to invest in the warming center,” Wilson said. 

“I replaced  it and put it in the coffers… But I keep them there just of a reminder of how quick somebody could get in that situation. It’s a good thing for the community to do and the community rallies around it.”

The warming center located at 150 East Lukken Industrial Drive at New Ventures. 

For more questions of how to get involved and volunteer, call Wilson at (706) 333-7973, email Mwilson@newventures.org or visit tchomeless.com/volunteer.