Heat relief found in cooling shelter - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Heat relief found in cooling shelter

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

The Salvation Army of Johnson County has already opened its doors as a cooling shelter due to high temperatures.

Corps Officer Tim North said their lobby is opened to all members of the community looking for an escape from the heat.

"Anybody who walks through the door. We don't care who you are. You need water? You need water. You need a place to cool down? You need a place to cool down. Everybody needs that," North said.

Nearly 20 people had used the facility before its dinner hours on Tuesday, just one day after it opened. The Salvation Army hopes this can be a way for people to protect themselves against the heat.

"One of the biggest things in the summer is dehydration and heat stroke. Number one if they can come in here and can get a bottle of water, get cooled down. [They're] probably not making a trip to the emergency room because they're dehydrated or having heat related issues," North said.

Water will be offered from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and people are also welcome to come in during the evening meal which is served Monday to Friday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.. He also said they'll stay open in between that time for people wanting to cool off.

"We want to make sure that if they need to get out of the elements, go for it. We'll be here to get them a bottle of water or something to drink to make sure they're hydrated and be able to remain cool," he said.

Throughout the summer, the facility will continue to open during days of extreme heat. North said they hope to use their new disaster vehicle to start bringing water to the community.

Bottled water has been collected but they say they're still in need of more, asking people to donate bottles of water or money to replenish them.

The Salvation Army of Johnson County is located at 1116 South Gilbert Court. 

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