STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — When temperatures drop many people experiencing homelessness are left out in the cold with few shelters to turn to.
One cold weather shelter in the Poconos is working every day to make sure they’re serving those in need.
The Wesleyan Inn Cold Weather Shelter is celebrating its 10th anniversary.
Those running it tell eyewitness news they’re seeing nearly double the number of people in need this year.
The shelter at the church started as cots set up inside the gym before they expanded adding men’s and women’s bedrooms, washers and dryers, bathrooms, and even a kitchen.
It opens every year from November 1st to March 31st and is available to those in need of shelter each night from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m.
The entire shelter is run by dozens of volunteers and with the help of the community. Donations like extra clothes and hot meals are provided to its guests.
Eyewitness News spoke to the shelter manager Peter Mankin, who says they’ve gone from seeing about 25 people a night to almost 50.
He says covid and inflation have played a role in the uptick of its overnight guests.
“Covid took a toll on absolutely everybody and I think just more people found themselves in situations. A season of their lives that they just found themselves without a place to live.”
If you’d like to donate to the shelter, Mankin says they’re looking for pairs of sweatpants, long thermal underwear, and boots.