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Cold spring weather difficult for Bozeman's homeless

By Lauren Maschmedt, KTVM Anchor, lmaschmedt@ktvm.com
Published On: Apr 16 2013 06:58:32 PM MDT
Updated On: Apr 16 2013 08:33:16 PM MDT
Bozeman Homeless Dave and Robert
BOZEMAN, Mont. -

The return of colder weather has hit southwest Montana homeless residents hard as they struggle to find places to stay after the Warming Center closed down.

Bozeman's Warming Center closed at the end of last month, giving area homeless no place to go when temperatures get dangerously cold. With the cold winter weather the past few days, they say it's been especially brutal.

We spoke to two men on Tuesday, Dave and Robert, who had been staying at the Warming Center, but now have to camp out.

They both said they've even seen a few people with frostbite -- Dave said one man lost some of his toes.

They tell us they've had to turn to resources like the Salvation Army and Homeless Outreach Program to get warmer sleeping bags, tents and blankets.

But they said living outside in weather like this is a day to day struggle.

"At the present time right now, I have a tent that leaks a little bit," Dave said. "So I have to be careful about that, so I don't get in wet conditions and stuff."

Robert said he's not from Montana, so he's not used to this bitterly cold spring.

"This is really surprising to me," he said. "I'm praying the good Lord that we continue to get moisture, but at least warm up."

The men also say hot meals make a huge difference in surviving the cold weather, and they are grateful for resources like the Community Café and Sunday meals from the Homeless Outreach Program.