SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Dehydration and heat exhaustion: something staff at the Shelters of Saratoga are keeping in mind.
Their outreach teams distribute water, sunscreen and other necessities to homeless people in the city regularly, but increase those trips when certain conditions put them at higher risk.
“It’s a matter of safety so anytime it’s hot out, one of us will come out with water if not both Alison and I, will come out with water just to make sure that everyone’s safe,” Stephanie Romeo, Associate Executive Director, said. “Even if someone won’t take the water, it’s nice to have eyes on people.”
In the meantime, they also work to get more people into shelter housing and build relationships with people in need, something Romeo said is crucial to their work.
“They’re not going to open up about what they’re looking for, what they need or what their barriers to housing might be so we really strive to build relationships and build rapport and develop service plans so we can start to work with people on their needs,” Romeo said.
The shelter serves around 30 people each day, but the need in Saratoga is going up. Rosemary Royce, Director of Development and Marketing, said she expects rising costs to continue to play a role in the winter.
“I don’t think we’ve seen the full impact of the pandemic yet,” Royce said. “We do have increasing inflation happening right now and that’s putting a lot more families at risk.”
Shelters of Saratoga is also working on developing a year-round shelter to provide more emergency housing in extreme temperatures.