Colder temperatures are hitting Humboldt County, leaving the unhoused more vulnerable to extreme weather. With the winter season right around the corner, many homeless in the community look to shelters in hopes to get out of these harsh conditions.
The Betty Kwan Chinn Homeless Foundation has already opened up their emergency center.
“We are ready for it, we’ve been doing that every year,” Chinn said. “This year we opened up a little bit early because the weather last year wasn’t that great.”
Betty says that the process to get into one of her facilities is quick and easy.
“People can come in and call me before 3 o’clock and then they can come in by 4 o’clock and stay there overnight and eat dinner. Then in the morning they have breakfast, they can leave,” Chinn said. “If they want to come back again they let me know.”
The homeless foundation also began their Holiday Basket Distribution for Thanksgiving, where the unhoused, elderly, and/or families can pick-up hot meals throughout the week. Everybody is welcomed to pick up a meal at Betty Chinn’s, there are no requirements.
“Tomorrow, we set out about 400 to 500 for single dinners to-go and it’s very needed this year, just to feel like a holiday,” Chinn said. “They call in and say, ‘Can I pick one up if I’m not qualified?’ I say, ‘You want a dinner; you have a dinner.’”
During Christmas the foundation will be handing out their Holiday Baskets as well as toys. Betty Chinn is grateful toward the community and to be a part of it to help in whatever way she can.
“All of these things we are doing, we are so lucky to have a community to support,” Chinn said.
The Betty Kwan Chinn Homeless Foundation is also asking the community to donate sleeping bags and pillows to help with sleeping arrangements both inside the shelter and to give out to those on the streets.
To get more information on ways to help or find accommodations go to bettychinn.org