Bend's winter warming shelter opened in a temporary location the weekend of Nov. 14, following the death of a man due to cold weather exposure. David Savory died Nov. 10 in Bend.
"This is a real tragedy for our town," wrote Bend Mayor Sally Russell in an email Nov. 13. "I know we can do better."
- Morgan Schmidt
- First Presbyterian Church is providing a respite from frigid temperatures. Pastor Morgan Schmidt advised people wanting to help with the church's temporary shelter to check the Pandemic Partners Bend Facebook page, and to visit the Crowdsource Justice Facebook page to advocate for long-term homeless solutions.
A group of Central Oregon government officials and community homeless advocates met virtually on Nov. 13 in response to Savory's death, aiming to move up the timeline for opening Bend's 2020-21 winter warming shelter.
The building slated for the winter shelter "needed a lot of work," to get it ready to house people, Bend's Oregon House representative, Rep. Cheri Helt, told the Source, so the group acted quickly to site a temporary shelter at Bend's First Presbyterian Church until the more permanent winter shelter location, on 2nd Street, could be finished. Volunteers set up tents inside First Presbyterian over the weekend, filling to capacity.
On Nov. 17, Shepherd's House, which will operate the shelter throughout the winter, announced that it would open the more permanent location Nov. 23.
"This new shelter is located on 2nd Street and will serve up to 70 women, children, families, and singles each night with warm beds, hot food, and loving care through April," read a press release from Shepherd's House Ministries. "We are grateful for our partnership with the City of Bend, countless other homeless advocates, and the community at large that will make this effort possible."
The new location, opening on Nov. 23, is located at 275 NE 2nd Street in Bend. Volunteers are still needed to operate the shelter, Helt said. Prospective volunteers can contact Volunteer Coordinator Ryan Olufso at email@example.com.