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Warrenton Warming Center finds itself homeless this winter, develops a new plan

Darlene Warren
Thursday, December 6, 2018

Warrenton won’t have a warming center with cots and blankets on the coldest nights this winter, but those needing help still can find it.

Volunteers with Warrenton Warming Center have developed more of a helping network this year to meet the needs of homeless residents where they are.

“There’s a lot of things changing this year,” said Darlene Warren, board president. “This would be our full-on open time if we were doing an overnight lodging this year.”

For the past two years, Warrenton Warming Center has been run out of Calvary Assembly of God Church on South Main Avenue. But the church has a licensed day care now and those who may have criminal records can’t mix with young children.

“We don’t have a facility we can operate out of,” Warren said. “But we know there’s still a need.” Volunteers spent the summer regrouping and working on ways to help those who need it most.

Their plan this winter is to take help directly to those who are struggling.

They’re helping support Calvary Assembly of God’s soup kitchen, which runs from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, the same day the adjacent food bank is open.

J&S Appliance donated a freezer to the county food bank, which the warming center was able to move to the church at 1365 S. Main for use in the soup kitchen. The church also is a place to pick up clothes, blankets and other supplies donated to the warming center.

The group also is working with Astoria-based Riverfolk, the VFW Auxiliary, Warrenton-Hammond Healthy Kids and Thankful Hearts, the group that has put on the annual community Thanksgiving dinner.

“The key to it is being consistent so homeless people know where we’re at,” Warren said.

While Warrenton Warming Center is nonsectarian and nondenominational, its mission is to provide a warm, safe place with food, love and support, based on principles of the Good Samaritan story found in Luke 10:25-36 of the Bible.

The group recently helped a couple who’d been stranded in the area to get home to Austin, Texas, and is helping a woman with stage IV cancer, who’d been evicted from her home, by delivering clothes and warm food to her. They’re looking for a toaster oven for her.

** How to help

Donations can be sent to Warrenton Warming Center, PO Box 174, Warrenton OR 97146. To volunteer, call 971-601-0884.

** If you need help

Contact the group through its Facebook page or call 971-601-0884.


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