Shelters welcoming in homeless during the day, passing out socks, blankets

With frigid temperatures, many shelters are staying open during the day and passing out warm weather gear (WSYX/WTTE)

The Open Shelter in Downtown Columbus is busy keeping people safe and warm during the bitter cold.

The team at the day shelter told ABC6/FOX28 during bitterly cold weather, they are seeing more people searching for some relief.

"We have been seeing record numbers of people coming up trying to get camping supplies," said Sheli Mathias with the Open Shelter.

Mathias said they give about 200 people a warm place to say on average during the week. The shelter is open from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

She said with so many people in need, the shelter can sometimes be the only option for some people.

"They can come up here and get what they need in order to survive," said Mathias.

They are busy feeding people in need and handing out life-saving supplies like blankets, socks, hand warmers and more.

"In these temperatures, you don't have to be out very long and you are looking at frostbite issues," said Mathias.

One patron said the Open Shelter has saved her life more than once.

"There have been days where I have woken up off of the concrete and the only thing that gave me hope for the day was the fact that I could come here," said patron Shannon Daniels.

She doesn't want anyone to have to sleep in this bitter cold.

"It is so cold it is literally physically painful and that is not right," said Daniels, "people shouldn't be put through stuff like that."

The shelter told ABC6/FOX28 that they run entirely off donations and anything donated is handed out.

They said they are in need of men's clothing and undergarments, as well as items like hand warmers and other supplies to keep people warm.

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