Frigid weather is back and homeless shelters are preparing for the influx of occupants during the holiday season. The high volume of people may cause shelters to scramble to provide additional resources that meet the demand.

"We get people who show up on our door when it gets cold and snowy and also we get more calls from people who are marginally housed who are living not fit for human habitation,” said Mike Alexa, The Executive Director of Community Shelter Services.

Thursday evening United Way announced that they are not renewing funding to various organizations including shelters at the end of June 2020. Mike Alexa says the Community Shelter Services relies on the United Way for a significant portion of revenue. “Without that money without that case management component I fear that people are just going to lose all hope and further slide into poverty and despair," said Mike Alexa, The Executive Director of Community Shelter Services.

The United Way told Erie News Now it is changing its focus to be preventative instead of reactive. It plans to release more details Friday but issued the following statement:

“We know there are certain ways looking at other communities to make conditions better, so that no longer do we count ourselves as success, meaning no longer do we need to count how many need help as opposed to how many people no longer need help,” said Bill Jackson, president of the United Way of Erie County.

 If you are interested in making donations to Community Shelter Services please call (814) 453-5937