As of Dec. 1, United Caring Services in Evansville, Indiana, opened its White Flag program through February.
Every night through the end of February, UCS will offer its regular day and night shelter services, plus a low-barrier White Flag program providing emergency additional emergency shelter for men, women, and children during cold weather.
Typically, the shelter's White Flag program only occurs when temperatures are expected to be below 32 degrees for at least three consecutive hours overnight prior to the Day Shelter's regular opening.
Due to changes and challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, UCS says the idea to offer the White Flag program more consistently during the three coldest months of the year emerged.
The White Flag season has already started in Evansville. Last week, UCS operated the program for three nights as temperatures dipped below freezing, serving 21 people each night.
According to UCS, Aurora's "48 Hours in the Life: The Homeless Experience Project," where local leaders experienced homelessness first hand, also contributed to the creation of the improved White Flag program.