By KYW community affairs reporter Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — One of center city Philadelphia’s longest-operating homeless shelters and soup kitchens is opening its doors as part of an overnight initiative to help get homeless men off the streets.

Hours after most shelters have closed their doors and when Old Man Winter is especially cranky, the Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission, at 13th and Vine Streets, says it will welcome homeless men into the warmth as part of its “All Night Safe Haven” initiative.

“When it gets cold and especially when it gets a little bit wet, it’s dangerous,” notes Sunday Breakfast executive director Dick McMillen.  He says the mission is already at capacity in its 170-bed men’s shelter, so they decided to expand services.   The men who come in won’t get a bed, but will get a warm place to sit.

 

(Dick McMillen.  Photo by Cherri Gregg)

(Dick McMillen. Photo by Cherri Gregg)

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“By opening up our dining room at night and adding another staff person to be available, we can house about 50 to 75 more people,” he tells KYW Newsradio.

And he says that everyone who comes in gets a hot breakfast in the morning:

“Those people that otherwise would be out on the street, they now have a place to go.”

McMillen says the overnight safe haven will stay open until March.