05/19/2017 – 11/01/2018
What is Severe Weather Shelter Network (SWSN)?
SWSN is a group of churches partnering with other community organizations, agencies and faith communities to provide emergency, overnight shelter on life threatening winter nights for people living on the streets. Our primary goal is to prevent death and/or loss of limb due to exposure to freezing temperatures. The season is from October 1 to April 30.
How is severe weather defined and determined?
Severe weather is defined as life and/or limb threatening conditions. Severe Weather Shelter Network adopted general guidelines used by many sheltering organizations to help us define life-threatening winter conditions. Our shelter opens when overnight temperatures are going to be 32 degrees or colder and wet or 20 degrees or colder and dry. We utilize multiple weather forecasts and common sense to determine each day whether we will be open for shelter that night. Host Site Coordinators from each rotation partner together and come to consensus about the overnight conditions.
How does it work?
Adults experiencing homelessness request to stay at our churches. Once a season they are screened and a Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) background check is performed to make sure they are good candidates for staying at the churches. They are brought to the host church via van at 7 PM. There they are fed a hot meal and sleep on mats with blankets provided. Coffee and a quick breakfast are provided in the morning before loading up the vans at 7 AM.
15-35 individuals experiencing homelessness in Arvada are provided with a warm safe space to sleep during nights of extreme cold or wet weather.