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Placerville’s Homeless Running Out Of Places Where They Can Stay Warm

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Anjali Hemphill Anjali Hemphill
Anjali Hemphill joined CBS 13 in June 2012 and she's happy to make the...
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PLACVERVILLE (CBS13) – They were forced out of their homeless camp when it shut down. Now former residents of Placerville’s Hangtown Haven are looking for places to stay warm.

A small shelter is already at capacity and with cold temperatures on the way, there could be twice as many people coming here to seek shelter.

About 40 people were dropped off by bus today at a shelter in El Dorado County looking for a place to stay warm.

“Last year at this time there was only 18 to 20 people,” said Kenneth, a volunteer.

“This is not one of our bigger facilities, so we’re definitely going to have to pack in here tonight,” said Dallas Privett, who’s staying at a shelter.

Each person scrambles to find some space to sleep in every room and every corner of this building.

“They are scattered everywhere just to get some space,” said Kenneth.

Volunteers say ever since the closing of Hangtown Haven, more and more homeless are filling up churches and shelters who have volunteered to take them in. They have nowhere else to go.

“Somebody has got to take care of them. You can’t sweep them under the couch,” said Ron Sachs, with the Foothills United Methodist Church.

And with freezing temperatures on the way, volunteers are worried there won’t be enough room.

“If rain comes, you’re gonna see 30 more people easily,” said Kenneth.

Sachs hopes others in the area will step up and help.

“We have churches, two churches that are doing double nights only because we can’t get somebody to host,” he said.

But some of these people worry one day soon, they’ll be turned away and left out in the cold.

The churches say they are working with the county, but at this point no permanent solution has been decided on.

So far, five churches in the county are helping to house the homeless. Volunteers help to coordinate, feed and keep watch.

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