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Pinellas Hope helps people without homes during ongoing extreme heat

Staff members say they currently have about 200 people on-site seeking shelter.

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. — As temperatures remain high across Tampa Bay, Pinellas Hope is helping families who may not have a home to keep them cool.  

“You’ve got to find a way to be happy, in everything that’s bad, there’s still a way to be happy,” said Christy Corn-Isbister, who’s been staying at Pinellas Hope for about two months.

Christy, her middle-school sweetheart wife, Jessica, and their dog, Roscoe, are looking for ways to stay happy in the heat.

“When you’re out in that direct sun during the day…the heat is brutal,” Jessica said.

Pinellas Hope is an emergency shelter operated by Catholic Charities. Staff members say they are nearing capacity for the number of caseworkers they currently have, with about 200 people on-site.

Folks living in the tents on the property say the daytime temperatures make it insufferable for them to even stay inside the only shelter they have.

“When the sun comes up in the morning, get out of that tent,” Jessica said. “‘Cause you’re gonna cook.”

People living out here say they do whatever they can to stay cool, typically spending the day finding shade on the covered deck.

Many of the people staying in the tents charge mini fans, which have sometimes been donated, to help make nights in the tents less miserable.

With temperatures and rent in the area competing for which will be highest, Christy says, they’re thankful for what they have.

“God’s still with you every day,” she said.

Staff members at Pinellas Hope tell 10 Tampa Bay they are always accepting help from people who find it in their hearts to give or volunteer.

Right now, they say they could use food to help the people living out there, and they’ve recently called out for donations that included bug spray, underwear and lawnmowers.

Anyone interested can click here to find more ways to donate. 

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