MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As the Minnesota and the Twin Cities metro area plunge into temperatures way below average for this time of year, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office said they are once again collecting donations for cold weather items that they intend to distribute to the homeless.

Last January, when the county saw a similar string of life-threateningly cold temperatures, the sheriff’s office developed this program to benefit those otherwise unsheltered. As a result, they distributed 247 hand warmers, 161 hats, 120 pairs of gloves, and 82 blankets, among other cold weather items.

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“Last January, we responded to an extended stretch of brutally cold weather by collecting cold weather items from the generous people of Hennepin County,” Sheriff David P. Hutchinson said. “We are currently distributing the remaining items from the previous drive to those in need. We’re counting on the continued generosity of our residents to make sure we can help the most vulnerable people make it through the worst of this winter in good health.”

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Among the items they are collecting are coats, hats, mittens, boots, scarves, blankets, and hand warmers. Items can either be new or gently used.

If anyone has anything they’d like to donate between now and Feb. 1, 2020, they may do so at any of the following locations:

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  • Sheriff’s Administration: 350 S 5th Street, Room 6, Minneapolis, MN 55415 (8 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
  • Sheriff’s Public Safety Facility: 401 S 4th Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55415 (24 hours)
  • Sheriff’s Water Patrol: 4141 Shoreline Dr., Spring Park, MN 55384 (8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)
  • Sheriff’s Emergency Communications Facility: 1245 Shenandoah Lane N, Plymouth, MN 55447 (8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)
  • Sheriff’s Patrol Headquarters: 9401 83rd Ave. N, Brooklyn Park, MN 55445 (8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)
  • Minneapolis Central Library: 300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55401 9 (a.m. – 9 p.m. Mon-Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday, noon – 5 p.m. Sunday)

The sheriff’s office also added that “should the temperature once again drop to extremely dangerous lows, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office will begin offering unsheltered individuals transport to shelters or other temporary accommodations.”