Warming centers are not a new idea; we’ve even had them in Polk County in the past. The reason for our current model is to provide a sustainable way of offering safe and warm places year after year without overburdening any one faith community or resource partner. This conversation started between a couple of pastors in Monmouth in October 2017. Although they were not able to open that season, the ball started rolling. The county stepped in and applied for a grant, which we were generously awarded from the Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Agency – more than double the amount asked for! You can read more about the new model and goals for this Winter season in the Statesman Journal article attached below.
When are you open?
When the low temperature is forecasted to drop to 32F or below for a period of three nights, the Warming Center activates on that first night. Intake is from 7-9 pm. The center is open until 7 am.
Where is the Warming Center located?
They are scheduling host sites throughout Monmouth, Independence, Dallas, and Falls City. These are churches and other facilities open to the public. Each location will be on call for a two-week period.
I’m in another town and don’t have transportation. How can I get there?
They can help! Transportation is available with an hour’s notice on the days they are active. They want you to be able to get to the warming center and back to your community the next morning.
What about all my stuff?
For everyone’s safety, they ask that you leave all bags, luggage, and back packs with them when you check in. They will label them with your name and secure them in a safe space until you check out. Please do not bring any weapons, drugs, or alcohol to the warming center.
What area(s) do you serve?
Rural Polk County, Oregon (basically everything outside of West Salem)
I have kids. Are families welcome?
Yes! Kids are welcome with a parent or guardian. For unaccompanied youth under the age of 18, they will work with law enforcement or DHS to contact relatives or find alternative shelter as needed.
What about pets?
Well-behaved animals are welcome, but must be kenneled while inside the building. Crates and food/water provided.
Can you use donations?
Yes! Instant decaf coffee/tea, bullion, gloves, beanies, scarves, blankets, sleeping bags, and other wintery-warm items are especially appreciated. They receive donations at the Dallas Resource Center and distribute from there as needed.
Thanks for your support!