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Word of warming shelters spreads through Grapevine

A safe and warm place to go
Dennis O'Grady, left, and Richard Blews, of Grapevine Center, stand in the warming shelter on Thursday afternoon, Jan. 26, 2023. Shane Potter/Butler Eagle

If Grapevine Center didn’t operate its shelter and community center, Butler native Dustin Scott said he would be dead.

Scott would have no options without Grapevine, he said.

“I don’t even know where I’d go, because this is the one place where people can come — they rely on it. It’s a good place in Butler. It’s like the vein, where people can come and get warm and be all right. I’m thankful for it.”

Scott’s story is one of dozens from people who said they otherwise could freeze without the warming center at 140 N. Elm St. The center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Grapevine is one of two warming centers whose combined outreach provides shelter to people facing homelessness both day and night. The other is Grace Wellness Center.

The Butler County Local Housing Options Team, which conducts one of the largest outreach efforts in the county, reported finding two homeless people sleeping in their vehicles during a county canvass it conducted Wednesday night, Jan. 25. The canvass followed a morning snowstorm that brought temperatures well below freezing.

An important factor to this outreach is education, said housing coordinator and housing options chairwoman Allyson Rose.

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