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Water project to hydrate homeless in Pueblo's heat

Water Access
Posted at 6:15 PM, Sep 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-05 21:35:06-04

PUEBLO — In Pueblo it has been at or near the 100 degree mark all week. It takes a toll on people who are homeless.

"Access to water and keeping hydrated is a big issue," said Kathy Cline with Pueblo Rescue Mission. She often coordinates with Pueblo Soup Kitchen which offers a place to get out of the elements and get a meal for a few hours of the day. On the hottest of days, the meal plan adds a hydration emphasis. "Come up with a plan so we can make sure these folks are taken care of in the heat as well," said Pueblo Soup Kitchen’s, Helen Benavidez.

“I go to the bus terminal for water,” said Bob a man who says he is homeless. There are other spots like parks and the downtown Riverwalk where the public can get a swig of water, but for someone who is homeless it can be a long walk on a hot day and hanging out is often not allowed. "Unfortunately, they're [water access] located in most of those places that the homeless usually do not find, uh, hospitality, let’s put it that way," said Cline.

It is why cases of bottled water get unloaded at the soup kitchen. It is not a regular item because of the cost. "We can't afford to give water out every single day, however, we're trying to do it at least once a week and we do allow folks to fill their water bottles here at the soup kitchen,” said Benavidez. The soup kitchen makes water available, but it closes mid-afternoon.