Cherry Street Mission housing more people as temperatures drop

Cherry street mission

TOLEDO (WTOL) - Cherry Street Mission, a shelter and revitalization center in Downtown Toledo, can house 300 people. Right now, it’s at about 200, but numbers are steadily rising as it gets colder outside.

"Over the summer there were about 30 girls and I'd say right now there's about 70," Leanna Carnes said.

Carnes is a resident at Cherry Street Mission as she gets back on her feet. When she's not working, she spends time helping.

"For me I work, but when I'm not working I volunteer either at the shelter or here," Carnes said.

At the Mac Street Café building, people are able to get a hot meal and warm up from the frigid temperatures. Kirk Whaley said the cafe saved his life. He reflected on what it was like when he was living on the streets.

“That is the loneliest, darkest, lowest I’ve ever been in my life and this has helped me a lot. I was at a point so low I was just going to give up,” Whaley said.

Since coming to the mission, Whaley has gotten help and is now waiting to hear back about an application for his own apartment outside of the mission. He wants everyone to know it's okay to ask for help.

“You’ve got the heat, you’ve got the blankets, you’ve got your bed, but if there’s somebody out there that’s cold, that their electricity has turned off, their gas is turned off, elderly, younger kids that need something like this, they need to get a hold of them,” Whaley said.

If you know someone who is struggling this winter, leaders at Cherry Street Mission say to either bring them by the building or let them know that resources are available.

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