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Water Street Mission in Lancaster provides shelter to homeless during winter

The shelter is seeing about five to ten intakes per week since the pandemic first started.

LANCASTER, Pa. — Water Street Mission in Lancaster  is seeing about five to ten intakes per week since the pandemic first started.

That number has not changed—even with the recent snowy weather.

“We actually did not see a big impact from the snowstorm," said Marketing Director at Water street mission Matt Clement. 

But they are ready for the possible influx that might come through what’s left of the winter season.

“Once it gets cold or there’s a storm we expect an uptick--but in working with Lanco my home--we set up measures to where there’s plenty of opportunities for people to find places-- not just the water street mission--but throughout the city," said Clement. 

Lanco my home is a coalition made up of health and human service providers, business leaders and private sector individuals--working to end homelessness in Lancaster county.

Due to covid-19, the maximum capacity at water street’s emergency shelter is 55, so the organization hasn’t been able to take as many people as they would want.

“We don’t want anybody to be out on the street. so, we’re working with them to support the other organizations that are also helping those who are experiencing homelessness currently," said Clement. 

Fox43 reached out to the department of human services on assistance

Here is their full statement:

"The Department of Human Services administers Pennsylvania’s public assistance system, which can help connect people in need to health care, food assistance, cash assistance, other programs that help cover basic essential needs. Pennsylvanians can apply for these services online at any time at www.compass.state.pa.us. Applications can also be requested by phone at 1-800-692-7462 and can be picked up at one of our County Assistance Offices. These offices are closed to the public due to the pandemic, but applications can be picked up and dropped in a secure drop box at most offices without needing to go inside.

DHS funds local Homeless Assistance Programs (HAP) that offer emergency shelter, rental assistance, support housing, and other services for individuals and families experiencing homelessness or at risk of losing their housing. The United Way of Pennsylvania’s 211 service can help people find help in their community, including HAP providers. Help is available online at pa211.org, by calling 211, or texting 898-211.

We encourage all Pennsylvanians to apply for and contact these services during these difficult times and let our social support network be a resource that can help." 

Download the FOX43 app here.

Here are more resource links:

Harrisburg, PA Homeless Shelters, Halfway Houses (shelterlistings.org) 

Lancaster, PA Homeless Shelters, Halfway Houses (shelterlistings.org) 

York, PA Homeless Shelters, Halfway Houses (shelterlistings.org)

Lebanon, PA Homeless Shelters, Halfway Houses (shelterlistings.org)

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