Hundreds without shelter turn to Little Rock Compassion Center as temperatures dip

The Little Rock Compassion Center has 75 spots left before reaching their capacity of 300. (Photo: KATV)

While below-freezing temperatures continue to keep central Arkansas in a wintery stronghold, those without shelter are facing a dangerous situation.

The City of Little Rock has warming centers for those needing to get out of the cold, but they won’t reopen until Tuesday, January 2nd.

That’s sending hundreds flocking to the Little Rock Compassion Center on Roosevelt Road.

"We get showered, bed, nice warm place to stay and three meals a day, couldn't be any better," said Kenny Stone.

Operating on donations and private funds, the center sees hundreds like Kenny Stone.

"Them taking care of me, feeding me, feeding the people, taking care of them like they do, it's just a wonderful thing,” says Stone.

Stone is a truck driver who came to Little Rock for a job.

But he had issues with his license and didn’t get the job.

With no job, no money, and nowhere to go, Stone says there's no telling where he would have ended up with the temperatures now dipping below freezing.

"Probably in the woods, in the cold, with nothing to eat,” said Stone. “No one to look after me."

Pastor William Holloway, CEO of the center, says when the cold air becomes unbearable he sees a 30%-35% influx of people walking through the doors.

"We can go up to 300 people here,” said Holloway. “We have enough room for 300 people to sleep, and we also have mats that we can put on the floor. And we have pillows blankets and stuff like that."

Cooking meals and donating food boxes, along with providing hundreds with a place to sleep, the center struggles through to meet needs.

Holloway says the most immediate need for the center is canned goods.

If you’re interested in donating, you can stop by at 3618 W. Roosevelt Road, or call (501)296-9114.

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