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Austin Salvation Army Giving Gift Of Warmth For Christmas
As temperatures drop below 40 degrees the Salvation Army is working to get the homeless out of the cold.
The non-profit has partnered with the Arch and Capitol Metro to provide an emergency shelter at the South Austin Recreation Center.
The Salvation Army is also giving the gift of a warm meal. Tuesday afternoon volunteers served more than 400 people ham, sweet potatoes and pie.
“Usually they have their best smile put away for something like this,” said Salvation Army communications director Randy Allen.
For a little over $2 a meal, the Army is able to give 1,200 dinners.
Julius R. Byrd spent his first Christmas at the shelter.
“I didn't see myself doing this, but I guess in a time of need,” said Julius.
He moved from Wisconsin to Austin and was unable to make ends meet. Before he knew it, he was on the street.
“I needed a place to stay and Salvation Army opened their arms to me. I have been staying here for a couple of months,” he said.
Its stories like his that has Laura Lund wanting to volunteer.
“These don't seem like people who don't have dreams and plans for the future. They are just a little down on their luck,” Lund said.
Julius’s luck did turn around. This Christmas he is happy to say he has a job and his wish came true.
“I get my own place starting tomorrow after Christmas,” he said.
By Christie Post