Boone County News Release

Press Archives Press Room

For Immediate Release

Media Contact:
Boone County Commission Administrative Coordinator
Phone: (573) 886-4312

Warming Centers and Shelters Open for Those in Need

January 7, 2010

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services coordinates a network of warming and cooling centers in the community. There are several locations in Columbia available to those who need shelter from the extreme cold.

Warming Centers

Warming Centers are available to the general public during the building's normal business hours. The public is allowed access to public areas, such as lobbies, restrooms, drinking fountains, etc. Columbia's warming centers include:

ARC,1707 West Ash Street, 573.874.7700
Armory Sports and Community Center, 701 East Ash Street, 573.874.7466
Boone County Government Center, 801 East Walnut, 573.886.4305
Columbia/Boone Cty Dept of Public Health & Human Services, 1005 West Worley, 573.874.7488
Columbia Mall, 2300 Bernadette Drive, 573.445.8458
Columbia Public Library, 100 West Broadway, 573.443.3161
Missouri United Methodist Church, 204 South 9th Street, 573.443.3111
Interfaith Day Center/Loaves and Fishes, 616 Park Avenue, 573.875.0826
Salvation Army, 1108 West Ash Street, 573.442.3229
Salvation Army Harbor House, 602 N. Ann, 573.442.1984

Official Shelters

Official Shelters provide sleeping accommodations. These locations may or may not include meals. Columbia's official shelters include:
New Life Evangelistic Center- men, 901 Wilkes Blvd, 573.875.0603
Rainbow House - children only, 1611 Towne Dr, 573.474.3558
Salvation Army Harbor House, 602 N Ann, 573.442.1984
St. Francis House- men, 901 Rangeline, 573.875.4913
The Shelter- victims of domestic violence, 573.875.1369
Welcome Home- veterans, 1206 Rangeline, 573.443.8001

Temporary Shelters

Temporary Shelters are set up for a certain period of time to meet the emergency needs dependent upon weather conditions. Columbia's temporary shelter is located at:
Missouri United Methodist Church, 204 South 9th Street, 573.443.3111
The church will be open from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. through Sunday morning (January 10th).

In order to reduce cold weather threats, consider these simple precautions:

  • Dress warm and stay dry. Wear a hat, scarf and mittens. Stay dry to prevent excess heat loss from the body.
  • Do not ignore shivering. Shivering is a sign that the body is losing heat. If shivering persists, go indoors.
  • Know the warning signs for hypothermia, an abnormally low body temperature. Continued exposure to cold temperatures can cause confusion, drowsiness, clumsiness and exhaustion.
  • Know the signs and symptoms for frostbite, or injury to the body caused by freezing. Frostbite mostly affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers and toes. Signs include tingling and numbness, white or grayish yellow areas of skin, and skin that feels waxy.
  • Be safe while outdoors in winter elements. Avoid ice covered walkways, be cautious while shoveling snow and clearing walkways.
  • Avoid traveling on ice-covered roads, overpasses and bridges.
  • Limit outdoor time for children and monitor for signs of frostbite or hypothermia.
  • Check on family, friends and neighbors that could be at high risk of cold related injury or illness including elderly, those that are fighting an illness and people that do not have access to adequate heat.
  • Provide proper shelter for pets. If pets or livestock must remain outdoors, provide fresh water and food supplies on a regular basis.
  • If you become stranded in your vehicle, cover your body with extra clothing and remain in your vehicle. Additionally, the health department offers two utility assistance programs for qualified Boone County Residents. H.E.L.P. (Heat Energy and Light Program) provides one-time emergency assistance to low income families with young children in the home. C.A.S.H. (Citizens Assisting Seniors and Handicapped) also provides emergency assistance to low-income senior citizens and persons with disabilities.

For more information on Warming Centers or our utility assistance programs, please visit the City of Columbia Web site at