Volunteers rally to help Tent City prepare for cold weather - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Volunteers rally to help Tent City prepare for cold weather

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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

The residents of Tent City were busy Thursday, building a fence that they hope will block the wind as colder temperatures roll in.

It's tedious work, but they don't have to do it alone. On Saturday, they're going to get some help from the Lubbock High School basketball team.

Coach Jesus Arenas said, "We're going to take the whole basketball program up to Tent City just to help the guys up there put the slats in the chain link fence and just help them get up the code," .

The Lubbock City Council placed some stipulations on Tent City in order for the area to be zoned as a special use shelter. One of those requires them to add a privacy fence around the entire property - about 1,200 feet of fencing.

They have four months to complete the project, but Les Burrus with Link Ministries thinks they'll be done within weeks, especially with help from the community.

"This was our most immediate project and it's more labor intensive than it is skill oriented - just dropping some slats through the chain link so it's something anybody can do," Burrus said.

Burrus says the slats will block more than just the sights and sounds from Tent City.

"It blocks the strong winds and especially for the winter it's going to be a great advantage for the tents," he said.

That's not the only way volunteers are helping the people of Tent City prepare for the cold.

Burrus says one person donated $50,000 to Link Ministries. He says they plan to buy 60 army surplus tents with the money. The tents cost about $500 each, but are built to withstand cold temperatures and strong winds.

Link Ministries says that's just the latest show of support from the community, just weeks after the city council voted to let Tent City stay there.

Coach Arenas preaches community service to his young men and says he's hoping for a big turnout on Saturday.

"I'm expecting about 65 to 70 of my boys just to get out there and get a little dirty and do something for the community," he said.

Burrus says he's moved by how much support they're seeing from people like Arenas.

"It's bringing people together in the community and it's amazing," Burrus said.

As winter approaches, Burrus says they still need coats and sleeping bags that can handle zero degree temperatures.

If you'd like to help you can call Les Burrus directly at (806) 224-9341.

Copyright 2011 KCBD NewsChannel 11

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