GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -- As temperatures continue to rise this summer, the Salvation Army Green Bay Corps Community Center will once again be turning into a cooling center for the community.
“We are already here, we are already open, air conditioning is running so…everybody deserves a cool place when it’s really hot out,” said Major Matthew O’Neil, area coordinator for Greater Green Bay Salvation Army.
The cooling center will be open Monday-Friday, 8:00 am-3:00 pm when temperatures reach 85 degrees or more outside. The address is 626 Union Court in Green Bay.
“We do offer lunch Monday through Friday here throughout the week, so a lot of them come in and stay,” said Major O’Neil.
Major O’Neil said it’s just another way for the Salvation Army to carry out its mission in the community.
“To serve suffering humanity, to meet human needs without discrimination in the name of Jesus Christ,” said O’Neil. “I think in reality, sometimes heat can be a real danger to those in the community and we don’t even realize it.”
Emergency Medicine Physician Dr. Cory Vogel with BayCare Clinic said avoiding heat-related illnesses comes down to planning.
“You have to think ahead. Everyone knows what the weather is and what is coming, so bring plenty of fluids,” Dr. Vogel. “Also watch heavy hot meals they can increase your heat, watch alcohol consumption, caffeine and sugary drinks because those can actually dehydrate you. Even though you take a lot of fluid with them, they act like water pills where you end up losing a lot of fluid, so you have to be careful.”
New data released by the Minnesota and Wisconsin Departments of Health Services show people between the ages of 15-34 are most likely to visit the emergency room for heat-related issues. It also found that men are more likely to visit the ER than women.
“Traditionally with public awareness, we target the very young and very old and those with chronic medical problems who can’t help themselves, but this study showed us who use the Emergency Department most,” said Dr. Vogel.
If you are out in the heat for a long period of time and start sweating a lot, suffer muscle cramps or start getting fatigued or confused, Dr. Vogel said its best to head inside and get some water.
“If you don’t have to be outside and you have an air conditioned area that would be ideal, if there is something available in the community, that would be ideal too,” said Dr. Vogel.
“We are able to give them some cold water and a place to sit for a bit,” said Major O’Neil.