Salvation Army seeks homeless in bitter cold - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Salvation Army seeks homeless in bitter cold

The 48 year old Jackson man is bundled in thick clothing, two sleeping bags and atop a long box to stay off the cold concrete.   Source: WLBT The 48 year old Jackson man is bundled in thick clothing, two sleeping bags and atop a long box to stay off the cold concrete. Source: WLBT
As night fell the Salvation Army's Canteen hit the streets of Jackson in search of the homeless.   Source: WLBT As night fell the Salvation Army's Canteen hit the streets of Jackson in search of the homeless. Source: WLBT
The charity agency will give away hot beef stew, coffee, cocoa and water, enough to serve up to 150 meals.    Source: WLBT The charity agency will give away hot beef stew, coffee, cocoa and water, enough to serve up to 150 meals. Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) - Below freezing temperatures have engulfed the metro and central Mississippi; deadly conditions for those without and for the less fortunate. The Salvation Army hit the streets of the Capital City in search of the homeless to provide them with a warm meal and much more.

Around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, as temperatures hovered in the mid 30's, a man sought shelter beneath the entrance ramp to Pearl Street off I-55.

Mike Watson did not want to talk on camera but says he's been homeless for two years and is trying to get acclimated to cold weather. The 48 year old Jackson man is bundled in thick clothing, two sleeping bags and atop a long box to stay off the cold concrete.

Even with temperatures in the teens expected, he says he will stay there.

"We try to let them know they are not alone," said Salvation Army Capt. Ken Chapman.

It's people like Watson who the Salvation Army is hoping to help in this frigid cold.

As night fell the Salvation Army's Canteen hit the streets of Jackson in search of the homeless. The first stop was the Opportunity Center where dozens grabbed a hot meal from the canteen.

"Some of us, we're just in a bad way and things didn't go right, said Paul Powe, who is homeless and seeking shelter at the Opportunity Center. "Families and things go through turmoil and things like that. And a lot of times we'll wind up out here in the street because of things, but I believe God is keeping us." 

The charity agency will give away hot beef stew, coffee, cocoa and water, enough to serve up to 150 meals. They will also be distributing hand made donated blankets.

"These blankets were made by the ladies who go to Briarwood Baptist Church, and I call them the Hands of Hope," added Chapman. "They spend the whole summer making blankets for nights just like this." 

The canteen next drove through the streets of Jackson. On Monument Street men and women from a boarding house were grateful for a hot meal and the loving warmth provided by strangers.

"Everyday, I get up thinking who can I help today," said Chapman. "So tonight is a perfect opportunity for us to do what we do best." 

Four Jackson shelters will be open for those without a warm place to stay during these subfreezing temperatures.

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