Shelters filling up fast as cold, winter months bring struggles to Utah’s homeless population

SALT LAKE CITY -- As fall begins to fade away and the snow starts to hit the ground, Utah’s homeless populations that roam, and even sleeps outside, rush to the shelters for warmth.

Matt Minkevitch, Executive Director of the Road Home Shelter in downtown Salt Lake City tells Fox 13 that their numbers increase dramatically come winter time.

“As the temperatures dropped our numbers grow. Those sometimes can be a steady incremental trend,” Minkevitch said. “Over the summer our numbers were around 900 now we’re up to 1,100 and I expect to see us go up to 1,300 nightly with some consistency and we’ve even topped 1,400 for the last three years.”

Luckily Minkevitch said the three shelters Road Home oversees have plenty of room right now for those in need of shelter. But there have been times and there could be times ahead where space is limited for people.

“It does get cozy here we had some areas the fire marshal has okayed us for us to use so we have some mats on the floor,” Minkevitch said.

Shelters are running very very low on certain things when the weather gets this cold, such as Socks, coats, diapers and blankets.

Most of those items come from the generous donations from organizations around the state.

“This is a challenging time of year no doubt we personally we get very focused on making sure we get people out of the cold,” Minkevitch said.

Want to get involved or donate winter clothes to the homeless? Click this link below:

https://www.theroadhome.org/give/in-kind-donations/