Jean Pratschner of Sequim seeks volunteers to be on-call for a warming center during severe weather at the Serenity House Housing Resource Center. 
                                Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash

Jean Pratschner of Sequim seeks volunteers to be on-call for a warming center during severe weather at the Serenity House Housing Resource Center. Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash

Warming Center to open, seeks volunteers

As winter breezes into town, one Sequim woman seeks support warming up those in-need.

Jean Pratschner has organized a warming center inside the Serenity House Resource Center at 583 W. Washington St., across the parking lot from the Serenity House Thrift Shop.

She first suggested the idea to the community group Sequim Cares more than a year ago, which began building up steam in October, she said.

“There’s no place to go at night in Sequim when the stores all close and (those in-need) could freeze to death, which isn’t acceptable in my book,” she said.

Pratschner spoke with Kevin Harkins, executive coordinator for Serenity House, who suggested the spot for the center.

Now, she’s seeking volunteers to work four hour shifts on an on-call basis on a week-by-week basis. So far, she has enough volunteers for the week of Dec. 3 and Dec. 10.

The center, will open during severe weather, 32 degrees or below, from 8 p.m.-8 a.m. for anybody except unaccompanied minors.

Pratschner said if the warming center was open last year, it would have been available for seven days with sub-32-degree weather.

It won’t host any cots or sleep facilities except for children, she said, and pets are welcome if calm and controlled.

Pratschner hosts a training session at the facility at 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30,

Each shift includes a paid OlyCAP employee, who sponsors the center, and at least one volunteer.

Before an individual can use the center, trained employees/volunteers will check for drugs, weapons and dangerous animals at the door for safety.

Volunteers will be given 8-10 hours notice before being needed for a four-hour shift.

Pratschner said Sequim Police officers informed organizers that during severe weather, they know of five-10 individuals who could use the facility.

To spread word about the warming center, Pratschner said she’s reached out to the police, churches, service clubs, Sequim Food Bank, and the City of Sequim for volunteers, support, and to help those in-need.

Once open, Pratschner plans to offer hot liquids and meals, and she’s collecting warm socks and blankets. They also plan to give out vouchers for showers at the YMCA of Sequim and for laundry in town.

Along with volunteers, center organizers seek a TV, DVD player, puzzles, games, and books too.

For more information on volunteering or donating, contact Jean Pratschner at 505-264-0278 or email JLPratschner@gmail.com.

More in News

Effort to move Olympic National Park goats to new home is underway

Olympic National Park’s mountain goats have begun a historic journey back to… Continue reading

Clallam PUD commissioners select Haffner’s replacement

Out of what they called a pool of experienced and talented candidates,… Continue reading

School staff rallies for pay

Classified staff at Sequim School District want their piece of the McCleary… Continue reading

Proposed health cuts endanger OMC’s Sequim campus funding

Leaders with Olympic Medical Center urge people to comment on a Centers… Continue reading

Nonprofit training session set

Let’s Go Legal, a training designed to help board members and staff… Continue reading

Land trust lanuches farmland conservation campaign

The North Olympic Land Trust is looking to go big with its… Continue reading

Postal Service hires new Sequim Postmaster Rob Garfinkle

If a package, newspaper, utility bill or love letter is on its… Continue reading

Local law officers intercept drugs intended for prison

The Olympic Peninsula Narcotics Enforcement Team and local law enforcement entities arrested… Continue reading

Police blotter — Sept. 19, 2018

The weekly police blotter includes incidents that occurred in the City of… Continue reading

Most Read