Onslow Community Outreach offers help during excessive heat period

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Onslow Community Outreach is offering additional help to clients due to an excessive heat warning for the next five days.

The Segerman Caring Community Center will serve as a comfort station from noon to 5 p.m. when food and water will be available.

“While folks are standing out in line waiting to be served, we give them bottled water because some of them come really early and they’ve been standing out there at least 30 or 40 minutes,” Cecelia Cameron, interim soup kitchen director, said. “It gets hot very quickly and they need to cool down.”

The center is located in downtown Jacksonville at 600 Court Street.

“Typically we operate from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.,” Paige Kuffel, volunteer coordinator with the shelter, said. “We’re looking to extend that just to get people through this heat. So just having things accessible and on hand that people can take with them if they do have to venture out is helpful.”

Jacksonville resident Vernon Abrahams visited the shelter today to cool down and get some cold water.

“On the hot days you have some people who don’t have a place to go and they’re walking around,” Abrahams said. “The food kitchen provides things for them like food and water, plus you can come in and cool off.”

In addition to the shelter, the Outreach operates a soup kitchen at the Segerman Center. It’s asking for community donations of bottled water, popsicles, individually wrapped ice cream and other light items it can pass out to those in need. Financial donations to help pay for the A-C and extra staff time are also appreciated.

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ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - A spot in the shade or a bottle of water are the simple things that can help beat the heat, but those are also things that can sometimes be taken for granted.

Staying cool for longer periods of time presents an even bigger challenge for those who have no home of their own.
 

At Onslow Community Outreach says there's a hot meal and a place to lay your head if you need it.

This week, with these high temperatures, they say they're also in the business of keeping people cool through what they're calling a comfort station, which will be available through Monday evening.

Friday, people could be seen waiting outside under umbrellas for the midday meal that the soup kitchen offers Monday through Friday.
 

In addition to the daily meal, one room will now serve as their comfort station from noon to 5 p.m.

Onslow Community Outreach says the station will be a place where people can step away to get some shade, grab a cool drink, a protein bar and then be on their way.

"Not only do we want to provide it for our clients, we want to provide it for individuals that perhaps could not get in the shelter, because we are at capacity, so anybody that has come to our shelter and hasn't been able to get in, we want to allow them to come in," says Cindy Williams, the shelter's director.

"I'm real grateful," Craig Overington says.

Williams says the temperatures have been so high, they've seen people who are currently clients returning as early as 2 p.m. and staying through the night.

Onslow Community Outreach is asking citizens to help in this effort. They say they could use donations of bottled water, light food items and financial donations. 

 

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