Cold weather shelters for the homeless will open Wednesday and Thursday at Community of Christ Church located at 2111 Presidio Street, Navarre and at Ferris Hill Baptist Church located at 6848 Chaffin Street in Milton. Those who would like to stay at the shelter must arrive between 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. No one will be admitted after 8:30 p.m. unless brought in by law enforcement. The shelter will close at 7 a.m. each morning.
The shelters will open each night when weather is forecasted to drop below 40 degrees, December through March. The shelters are for people who are homeless, can care for themselves, and are not at risk to themselves or others. No one will be admitted to the shelter that is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and are unable to walk unaided or are disoriented.
The churches, with the assistance of the Santa Rosa County Emergency Management Office, will be responsible for making the determination of when the shelter is needed. Santa Rosa County Emergency Management is responsible for notifying the public of its availability and alerting sheriff deputies so they can assist with transportation and notifying the homeless of the shelter’s availability.
Both shelters utilize volunteer resources and donations to operate. Ferris Hill Baptist Church is currently accepting financial donations and supplies including men’s socks, toothbrushes, toothpaste, towels, soap, shampoo and deodorant. Donations can be dropped off at the church 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday or online at www.ferrishill.org. For more information contact Ferris Hill Baptist Church at (850) 623-3500.