blessings under the bridge

Local non-profit helps prepare those without a home for coldest night of the year

It’s a chance for many struggling with homelessness to pick up a hot meal and prepare for what will be the coldest weather we’ve seen in several years. Along with dinner, Blessings Under the Bridge handed out warm clothes. It’s a weekly event for the organization, but it seemed particularly important on Wednesday as temperatures dropped into the single digits. Jessica Kovac, founder of Blessings Under the Bridge, says, when that happens, they see people develop black and blue skin on their fingers. A couple weeks later, they may not have those fingers at all. Hundreds lined up on the I-90 overpass to get essential items like food, clothing and toiletries. “Even for us volunteers who are only out here for three hours on one night, you can feel your fingers buzzing and your toes are like, it's it's real,” said Kovac. Members of Spokane Lilac Festival have been volunteering for two weeks. While COVID-19 has restricted the capacity of local shelters, Kovac says even in normal circumstances, there are those who would not go to shelters for various reasons and end up sleeping on the streets. "It is a very serious issue for our city to realize that they need to understand that it not just, they need to go to this place because it's a place that's there,” said Kovac. “There's a reason why homelessness is so much more than just what the mindset of people is.”