Family House numbers up with cold temperatures - how you can help

Family House numbers up with cold temperatures - how you can help
(Source: WTOL)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Family House says they are working with Toledo police and Toledo fire to find families who are living in their cars and need to get warm.

Most families are embarrassed when they find themselves without a home, some resorting to hiding in their cars. But that is not an option with a negative 15 degree windchill.

"It's a blessing," said Diara Hoide, who is living at the shelter right now. "Before this, I didn't know where my next move was, so it was either stay in my car or bounce around, maybe even have to give my kids up."

"With these kind of temperatures, keeping that car running, keeping the gas in the car, too, keeping the heat on and running is a challenge," Renee Palacios, Executive Director of Family House, said. "So, we are seeing numbers go up."

Their plan is to come in, get warm and then get back on your feet with the help of the services at the shelter.

"My kids are here, we are warm, we've got heat, hot water," Hoide said. "We can brush our teeth, get dressed whenever we want to and be together is the most important part."

Family House says all 115 beds in 36 rooms are full Friday night.

Their biggest need right now is twin size blankets and comforters to keep warm.

Levis Commons is holding a drive until January 14 collecting these items. They can also be dropped off directly at Family House or even bought on their Amazon Wish List. 

"If you have a donation for Family House, it will not go unappreciated," Hoide explained. "It's a use for somebody in here."

"We're a shelter, it's a communal style living so when you add the cold the sickness maybe the letdown emotionally of the holidays, yeah, it's a really hard time for all human, especially the homeless," said Palacios.

Family House says they received a $6,000 donation from Morgan Stanley on Friday. Palacios says they can now buy a freezer big enough to store their meat donations.

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