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Local shelters work together to keep homeless warm

Cold weather is on the way, and local shelters are hard at work to be sure the homeless community stays warm.

Hathel Bowden reflects back on his time living on the street. 

"They had the cardboard -- was like their little mattress -- and to be honest, I was pretty warm because I had two blankets."

The blankets came from local shelters like Daybreak and the Middle Georgia Rescue Mission.

"We gave out 200 coats, which was a wonderful thing we were able to do," Amy Walker, development manager at the rescue mission said.

With cold weather on the way, Walker says they're gladly accepting more donations, especially men's coats. 

"If people would like to be able to bring by additional coats, blankets, any kind of sleeping bags, we would love to be able to pass those out to our brothers and sisters," Walker said. 

Hot meals are also handed out outside the rescue mission every day at 3 p.m., to be sure everyone who calls Macon home stays warm.

"These are the only resources that people who are actually living in the streets have," Bowden said.

Shelters work together through the homeless coalition to spread the word to the hundreds of homeless people that walk through their doors. 

"We're all on the same page, we're all passing the same information," Rhonda Williams, assistant director at Daybreak said. 

"Not everyone comes to Daybreak who is homeless; there are homeless in a lot of different areas, so we do have to reach out to different entities to spread the word," Williams continued. 

Bowden says the homeless community is tight-knit, and word-of-mouth goes a long way once the shelters inform them the cold is coming.

"A lot of what they have is one homeless person hands it down to another, and it kind of just comes through in accumulation," Bowden said.

They work together so everyone can stay warm when the weather gets cold. 

The Salvation Army opens their doors when temperatures drop below 35 degrees, and can house around 150 men and women.