(Bratislava) Central European countries face record freezing temperatures these days, which causes health problems and even threatens the survival of homeless people. This critical situation is being alleviated by a number of asylum facilities for people in need, especially those run by Caritas. “In cases of extreme cold, we are able to provide shelter for the night, warm tea and food, as well as warm clothes”, explains Otto Holecek, head of St. Vincent’s charity in Uherske Hradiste. The activities of the diocesan offices of Caritas are partially supported also by regional municipalities and individuals – people of good will -, but the main financial burden lies on the shoulders of the Catholic Church. Caritas provides services to homeless people in 23 asylum houses in all regions of the Czech Republic with a capacity of 633 beds. Last year, over 1500 people benefited from their hospitality. There are also 26 daily centers with various services provided to more than 9,000 clients on an annual basis. For more information: www.charita.cz.