Anchorage Church Operates as Cold Weather Overflow Shelter.

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by Whitney LB Miller

ANCHORAGE - When the cities largest shelters reach capacity during cold winter nights a hand full of churches activate as over flow shelters. A faith-based program aimed at getting people off the streets during extreme weather.

Shiloh Missionary Baptist church partnered with the municipality to take in families every third and fourth Friday when city shelters have reached capacity.

"we opened our doors two year ago, we've had at least 28 - 30 families come through here," said Shiloh's PADS Coordinator Jacqueline Gay. "we take care of them we give them food..we take care of their every need"

Everything from finding resources outside of the church to helping them find jobs and even permanent housing.

Last year the church helped place four families in homes.

Unlike most shelters in the city Shiloh's PADS program welcomes single fathers.

Associate Pastor Michael A.Bunton says "we try to encourage them there is hope in the church there is hope in Anchorage with a lot of the churches that are partnering.

The team says municipal code only allows them to operate a number of hours at a time and for safety reasons stipulates the types of food that can be fed to families.

"Were here to help as much as we can," Bunton said.

He says they hope to start a program in the future that will allow those families to have a place to keep warm during the day.

In the mean time the group says they need volunteers to continue their monthly program.