El Paso and Las Cruces shelters help homeless during cold winter months.

    Homeless receiving shelter from the Opportunity Center in El Paso<p>{/p}<p>{/p}

    Temperatures dropped significantly Monday night into Tuesday morning.

    All year, Las Cruces and El Paso shelters have prepared for a high intake during the cold winter months.

    John Martin, the director for the Opportunity Center for the Homeless said once temperatures dip below 40 degrees, the shelter expects more people to shuffle in.

    “We are always concerned about the individuals who are out on the street and as the temperatures dip colder, we do see your numbers increase,” said Martin.

    The Opportunity Center of El Paso was able to donate almost 29,000 items of clothing within the past 12 months.

    They said that still isn’t enough, especially since they are almost to capacity most winter days in their shelter.

    “Last night in the men’s facility we had 94 men, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we get close to 130 people this evening,” said Martin.

    Randy Smith, the director for the Las Cruces Gospel Rescue Mission, said he tries his best to accommodate all those who are seeking shelter from the cold temperatures.

    “We open up our dining room and we have mattresses that we put on the floor anytime the temperatures drop below 35 degrees,” said Smith.

    The temperatures dropped to below 25 degrees on Tuesday morning.

    Both shelters said they are always accepting donations, especially warm clothing to help the homeless community in El Paso and Las Cruces survive the cold.

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