HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Some shelters in the Pine Belt were giving the homeless a break from being in the cold Tuesday. That’s why the Fieldhouse extended its hours until 10 Tuesday evening.
"I know I went to bed last night with it raining, and then I woke up with my teeth chattering. That’s all I know,” said Todd Knapp, who said he lives in a tent in the woods.
Knapp is one of many homeless people in the Pine Belt bracing for the cold weather. Tuesday, he was at the Fieldhouse for Homeless for shelter, clothes and food.
“Some homeless shelters are way different than most,” Knapp said. “Some people, they won’t even feed you over there. They feed us. Just clothing, whatever you need really."
Some of the homeless people we spoke to at the Fieldhouse say they don't take the services they are provided for granted. It was hard for Brad Lees to at first accept assistance. He says anyone could be one paycheck away from being out on the streets.
“And its hard being independent to ask, you know to try to get some help. The Fieldhouse here, its not a hand-out, its a hand-up,” said Lees, who came to the Fieldhouse to stay there last week.
The Fieldhouse can only house up to 30 people at a time. For those who don’t have anywhere warm to stay after it reaches its limit, the City of Hattiesburg is also providing solutions.
“Also, the warming shelter off Highway 49 south, near the multi-purpose center, they will be open at 6 o’clock tonight for people to sleep there," said Kim Townsend, Homelessness Coordinator for Hattiesburg. “City Transit is actually, they will take them on the purple line down there free of charge if they need to get there.”