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Advocates prepare to help Seattle's homeless through unprecedented heat wave

Outreach vans and extra water outside shelters are among many ways advocates plan to help the homeless.

SEATTLE — As temperatures in Seattle surge, those who work with unsheltered people are gearing up to help those most at-risk to the elements.

The Union Gospel Mission said it will set up a "hydration station" outside its men’s shelter to provide some shade and cold water for anyone who might need it.

The hydration station will open Friday and next week if temperatures start climbing.

Mission search and rescue teams will also hit the hot pavement in vans to find anyone who may need water and are trying to stay cool. Sometimes when people experience extreme heat or extreme cold, they are more willing to leave the streets and get help.

RELATED: Western Washington forecast

“It's going to be really important for our search and rescue to get out to these encampments," explained Union Gospel Mission Men’s Shelter Director Charles Alford. "What they're going to be doing is handing out water to those that are experiencing homelessness in these encampments just to help them."

Alford said if people see someone on the streets in the next few days, they might want to offer them some extra water.

“If they see somebody struggling in need, if you have some water, just reach out to them, give them some water,” said Alford.

The Mission has brought about 30 pallets of water from its warehouse to help people get through the next few days. Union Gospel Mission said those who want to support the Mission's work can go to its website.

The latest forecast calls for temperatures to increase dramatically through the weekend with highs expected in the triple-digits on Monday for many areas of western Washington.  

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