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Local organizations fight to be a resource to the homeless despite there not being an official San Angelo cooling center

"We always wish we can do more than what we're able to do."
Credit: Kami Simmons

SAN ANGELO, Texas — The Concho Valley has been without an emergency shelter for two years now. Despite this challenge, the non-profit, alongside other community groups, strives to be a resource for the homeless, especially during the hot summer months. 

One of the services the Salvation Army in San Angelo provides is sending homeless people with COVID-19 to motels. 

Major Darvin Carpenter is the Corps Officer with the San Angelo Salvation Army.

"If the homeless go to the hospital and are certified as COVID patients and have no place to go, they will send them directly to the motels, and they will be there with 10-14 days. During that time, and we'll provide you know food and other things, so they do not have to leave the motel at all," Major Carpenter said. 

The Salvation Army is funded by a variety of community services and donations. For example, many people have brought water to the San Angelo Salvation Army for the water service. Other times the donated funds are used for Salvation Army staff to purchase the water. 

"It's always helpful. We always wish we can do more than we're able to do. But working with the homeless is a challenging, complex problem. So, what we want to do is not just be a band-aid for them. But help them and point them in the direction so they can find a better future for themselves," Major Carpenter said. 

Homeless aid officials said it is just not enough resources for the homeless population during the warm summer months.

Bob Salas, the director of family and neighborhood services and also the chair of the Concho Valley Homeless Planning Coalition, said, "No particular organization has stepped up. Unfortunately, we have not had anyone step up just yet, but we're still working on that. I'm assuming there are going to be a lot more hot days coming up. So we're going to try to prepare for that."

The Salvation Army staff is asking for the community's help by buying a case of bottled water or sending a donation for staff members to buy bottled water. People are welcome to drop off the water bottle cases and or financial contributions at the office located at 34 W 3rd St, San Angelo, Texas 76903.