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Athens-Clarke County Gov Ramps Up Overnight Shelters as Freezing Temperatures Grip the Region

The Bigger Vision of Athens Community Shelter

Athens-Clarke County Unified Government expanded overnight shelter resources due to freezing temperatures that began yesterday and extended into Wednesday. The county government’s tiered response system provides a response to extreme environmental conditions that might impact the community and was developed based on the “cold weather emergency” in December 2022.

According to the press release:

Tier 1 is triggered at 35° to 40° and expands current overnight service providers by 30 more beds to raise overnight accommodations from 109 to 139 beds at Bigger Vision and the Salvation Army. Tier 2 is a further expansion triggered by single digit temperatures and capacity needs that open overflow beds. This would open shelter operations at Athens First United Methodist Church downtown. Tier 3 is capacity based and moves other community spaces into operation as shelters or to provide other means of support, including hotel vouchers. Tier 4 is full activation of an Athens-Clarke County operated shelter(s) that can sleep up to 75 people in any need. Tier 4 is activated based on the capacity of Tier 1-3 facilities, a State of Emergency declared by the Georgia Governor, and possible large-scale impacts to the community including power loss possibilities and ice.

In addition, ACCGov staff and community partners are actively seeking other locations that would be interested in a Tier 2 and Tier 3 role if cots, blankets, pillows, and other resources are provided by ACCGov.

As part of the Tier 1 response, these community organizations will provide expanded overnight shelter on an emergency basis as space is available for those without housing or shelter:

○ Salvation Army of Athens Center of Hope 484 Hawthorne Ave, Athens, GA 30606 southernusa.salvationarmy.org/athens/provide-shelter 706-543-5350 Monday - Sunday from 6:00 PM to 8:00 AM (new intakes from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM) ACC Transit Route - #5 (#7 stop within quarter mile walk) Buses run Mon. - Fri. until 9:45 PM & Weekends until 6:45 PM

○ Bigger Vision of Athens 95 North Avenue, Athens www.bvoa.org/emergency-shelter-program 706-340-6062 ext. 2 to reserve starting at 4:00 PM 18 years old minimum - single adults ACC Transit Routes - #6, #8, #24 Buses run weekdays Mon. - Fri. until 9:45 PM & weekends until 6:45 PM

Additional resources such as clothing, food, and other needs can be found at the Homeless Coalition of Northeast Georgia's website at https://endathenshomelessness.com/resources.

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