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The shelter is open to anyone experiencing homelessness who needs a warm place to sleep on a first come, first served basis

COURTESY UGM - The Union Gospel Mission in downtown Portland.The Union Gospel Mission will open its emergency cold weather shelter in downtown Portland for the first time this season at 9 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 27.

The homeless service provider said it is opening the shelter because overnight temperatures are expected to be in the low 30's. The address is 3 N.W Third Ave.

The shelter is open to anyone experiencing homelessness who needs a warm place to sleep. There are 45 beds available on a first come, first served basis. Guests can stay until 5:30 a.m. Monday. Coffee and a hot breakfast sandwich are provided in the morning.

According to the Mission, for those experiencing homelessness, the winter is especially dangerous. For a population who lacks regular medical care, illnesses are exacerbated. When it's wet, people can't stay or get dry. When it drops below freezing the dangers of hypothermia and death from the cold are very real.

It costs about $16 to provide someone a night of emergency cold weather shelter, which includes a hot breakfast, clothes and cold weather gear. The Mission said it could use donations of cold weather gear including hats, scarves and gloves. Items can be dropped off at 3 NW Third Avenue in Portland.

Financial donations to support the overnight shelter can be made online at www.ugmportland.org, or by calling 503-274-4483.

About Union Gospel Mission: Union Gospel Mission's purpose is "Feeding the hungry, restoring the addict and loving our neighbor." Union Gospel Mission has been serving Portland since 1927. Union Gospel Mission provides meals and care for the homeless and operates LifeChange -- a transformative recovery program for men, women and children. Contact Union Gospel Mission at 503-274-4483 or ugmportland.org and @ugmpdx.

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