Cold weather help
6:38 am
Wed December 26, 2012

United Way Offers Services For Cold Weather

Credit Flickr/AMagill

With the cold weather moving through the St. Louis area, the United Way of St. Louis is urging people to take advantage of its free help line.

United Way spokeswoman Carrie Zukoski  says people in need of temporary shelter from the cold, a warm meal, or even a place to stay should call 2-1-1 for help.

"They can call them 24-7, so they can call them even if it’s on Christmas Day to find out if there is any place they can go to get warm," she said. "Typically, warming shelters are not open until it's 15 degrees or colder, but that does not mean that there aren’t places they can go."

The United Way also offers limited assistance to low-income residents struggling with home heating bills.

"You can also have someone come over and insulate your windows, caulk you windows, so there’s no drafts and things like that," Zukoski said.

She cautioned against heating homes exclusively with space heaters, which can often run up electricity bills or in some cases pose a fire hazard. And Zukoski also urged residents to check on elderly neighbors.

Follow Adam Allington on Twitter:  @aallington