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Tent City holding 30th annual event this weekend

The goal is to connect people with needed social services, healthcare and meals.

TOLEDO, Ohio — This weekend, there's a focus on the homeless right here in Toledo and making sure people have access to services that can help.

A tent filled with clothes, shoes and jackets sits all ready to keep people warm.

It's just a small part of this year's Tent City in downtown Toledo.

"We have medical and dental, we have different social services available and then we serve meals throughout the day," Executive Director of 1Matters Shawn Clark said.

Clark is glad to be back and serving after a year off due to COVID-19.

The need for this year's event is apparent, seeing the number of people lined up for pre-registration.

"These are human beings that are in need and there are other human beings stepping up to make sure they're taken care of," Clark said.

Cherry Street Mission says it is seeing a 900% increase of first-time homeless people receiving services, many of whom were evicted. 

There are only six available beds in the men's shelter, consistent with peak winter numbers. 

Knowing there's great need, this year's mayor of Tent City, Steven Yarbrough, is ready to cook 3,000 meals out of a renovated school bus.

It's the same bus he can be found driving around weekly to feed people in.

"You know, this will humble you very much down here," Yarbrough said.

Tent City will be going on through the weekend at the Civic Center Mall. If you are in need of services, you can register when you show up.