HARTFORD -- As most of us sit in our warm homes, it’s difficult for us to imagine what it’s like for our most needy populations when severe cold weather hits. This is the time for volunteers and first responders to look to aid those who face dangerous exposure, the homeless.
In Chicago, volunteer organizations with warm hearts literally have boots on the ground. Living in tents designed for recreational warm weather camping, in temperatures this low, the homeless don’t just need food and clothing, they need lifesaving warmth to get through these difficult times.
In Hartford, when dangerously cold temps hit the capitol city, the police go from crime fighters to cold fighters. Actively patrolling the streets for those sleeping in the cold night. A video from 2016, shows an officer finding a homeless man sleeping under a bridge, and they bring him to shelter.
As beat cops - street cops, over the course of a career, you start to know where the homeless lay down at night. And if you’re good, really good, then you know them personally and have the ability to get them to shelter. It’s a relatively new trend, as the severe cold comes, police in cities across the state will be adding extra cold patrols, officers out on patrol with one goal, getting those in need to a warm bed for the night.
As cities across the state are opening warming centers, Governor Lamont has activated the severe weather protocol. But for beat cops, the preparation has been going on all year, learning and getting to know the homeless, so when the cold hits, they can get them to warm
Below are a list of warming centers across the state:
Daytime Warming Centers:
• Hartford Public Library, Downtown Branch, 500 Main St and its branches. For locations and hours, please visit https://www.hplct.org/locations-hours
• South End Wellness Center, 830 Maple Ave: Wednesday - Friday 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
• North End Senior Center, 80 Coventry St: Wednesday – Friday 9:30 am – 3:00 pm
• Parkville Senior Center, 11 New Park Ave: Wednesday - Friday 8:30 am - 3:30 pm
• Hispanic Health Council, 175 Main St: Wednesday - Friday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
• Hispanic Senior Center, 45 Wadsworth St: Wednesday - Friday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Overnight Warming Center:
Willie Ware Community Center, 697 Windsor Street will open from 12 noon on Wednesday, January 30th through 12 noon on Sunday, February 3rd, 2019.
- Tuesday, January 29th, 5:00pm – Wednesday, January 30th, 8:30am
- Wednesday, January 30th, 5:00pm – Thursday, January 31st, 8:30am
- Thursday, January 31st, 5:00pm – Friday, February 1st, 8:30am
- Friday, February 1st, 5:00pm – Saturday, February 2nd, 7:00am.
- Police Department - 2900 Dixwell Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518
- Fire Station 2 - 71 Circular Avenue, Hamden, CT 06514
- Fire Station 3 - 441 Hartford Turnpike, Hamden, CT 06517
- Fire Station 4 - 2372 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518
- Fire Station 5 - 2993 Whitney Avenue, Hamden, CT 06518
- Fire Station 9 - 245 Johnson Road, Hamden, CT 06518
- Simsbury Library Wed & Thurs 9:30am–8:30pm and Friday 9:30am–5:30pm
- Eno Memorial Hall Wed & Thurs 8:30am–4:30pm and Friday 8:30 AM – 1:00 PM For info call 860 658-3283.
- Joseph House will be operating as a warming center for the winter season 7 days a week from 6 am to 9 pm.
A listing of available shelters throughout Connecticut can be located by calling 2-1-1 or visiting.