Where Can The Homeless Find Shelter From The Cold?


Shelters for the homeless are open and available during the winter, thanks to volunteers and the non-profit Code Purple.

Beds can be found on a nightly basis, but capacity at shelters is limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to maintain social distance.

If you encounter a homeless person, the Delaware Housing Alliance suggests that you approach the person and encourage him or her to seek shelter, or call a local non-emergency number for police.

The centralized intake line can be reached at 1-833-FIND-A-BED. Shelter hours vary.

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Code Purple and Delaware Health and Social Services provided the following information on shelter operations:


Western Sussex: Code Purple shelters are housed in churches, with a central location for an evening meal. Fore more information call the hotline at302-519-0024 or visit codepurplesussexcounty.com

For men: Church of God, 425 Stein Highway, Seaford. Check-in is at 8 p.m. and check-out is at 7 a.m.

For women: Grace Seaford Church, 805 Atlanta Road, Seaford. Check-in is from 8:30-9 p.m. and check-out is at 7 a.m.

For men: Avenue United Methodist Church, 20 N. Church Ave., Milford. Check-in is from 8:30-9 p.m. and check-out is at 7 a.m. 

For women, with or without children: Milford Nazarene, 11 NW Salevan Place, Milford. Check-in is from 8-9 p.m. and check-out is at 7 a.m. 

Eastern Sussex: This Code Purple location operates all winter at the former Troop 7 Building, 18006 Coastal Highway, Lewes. Shelter hours are 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. To reserve a spot, call: 

  • 8 a.m.-2 p.m.: 302-269-7050 
  • After 2 p.m.: 302-519-0024 


Code Purple Kent County has ongoing sanctuaries (hotline is 1-800-733-6816 or www.codepurplekentcounty.com), with check-in beginning at 5:30 p.m. and check-out at 8 a.m. The sites: 

Men: Peoples Church, 46 S. Bradford St. Dover. 

Women and children: Maranatha Life Changing Church, 1235 E. Division St., Dover.

“We are always grateful to the series of nonprofits and volunteers that operate Code Purple shelters across our state, but we are especially thankful for the work they are doing during the pandemic to keep vulnerable people safe,” Governor John Carney said. “This is the true meaning of neighbors helping neighbors.” 

“The dropping temperatures, the strong winds and the wind chills arriving in Delaware will mean dangerous conditions outside,” DHSS Secretary Molly Magarik said. “We encourage anyone without a place to go to find a spot at a Code Purple shelter.”