When Temperatures Drop, KARM Welcomes Homeless

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Knoxville (WVLT) - When the temperatures drop, the homeless are more vulnerable to life threatening situations.

Volunteer TV's Whitney Daniel is live tonight outside Knox Area Rescue Ministries with more on what that organization and others are doing to protect people from the cold.

Low-temperatures early this fall mean record numbers of people are taking shelter here, and with temperatures dipping into the low 30s Thursday night, it was no different.

KARM housed 206 men and 46 women.

That's about average for this time of year.

With so many people in the building at once, KARM directors are having to take emergency measures to make sure everyone has a place to sleep.

Rollaway cots and extra mattresses are used, and when it gets full enough, the center makes makeshift beds in the chapel.

And unless there's a safety problem, KARM never turns anyone away.

"When they come indoors, it gives us an opportunity to engage them to build relationships with them, and hopefully get them to a spot where they can make choices other than being homeless and on the streets, but right now the focus becomes really on getting them off the streets and protecting their health," Burt Rosen, President, KARM

Knox Area Rescue Ministries also sees an increase in the meals they serve when the temperatures drop, usually averaging above 1,000.

If you want to help KARM continue their services to the homeless, they're always in need of blankets, pillows, and your help.

To volunteer just call 673-6540.

Friday night's temperatures are supposed to hit below freezing, at 31-degrees. So, it may be another record breaker here at KARM.