Hassan Khan, chief executive of Haven Night Shelter, said the shelters buckled down each year to prepare for the influx of people seeking places to stay. During the cold season, the Haven Shelter brought in extra mattresses to ensure that people had a place to sleep.
Khan said not every bed was occupied in their shelters around the city. The facilities in the CBD saw most of the traffic, while other shelters were not as overwhelmed. Khan said when when people sought help, the shelter made it a priority to house them.
Even during the busiest nights, they strove to make sure no one was left on the street. On one night, Khan said, 180 people sought shelter in a facility with only 90 beds. To cope with the influx, Haven provided the clients with transport to other facilities.
Khan even sees a silver lining in the cold weather, saying it drives more people to shelters and organisations that will ultimately get them into a better situation. Between April 1 and June 30 this year, Haven assisted 249 people to reunite with their families and get off the streets.