CHULA VISTA, Calif. — Chula Vista nonprofit organization Community Through Hope on Monday started to offer its unsheltered clients a place to cool down during the summer heat.

There’s a big tent in the parking lot of the Chula Vista office that offers shade and a big misting fan to help people cool down. They also have access to food, water and sunscreen.

Vanessa Posada has spent the last eight months living on the streets waiting on housing.

“It’s been tough, our savings are gone, you got to get a tent, tents are expensive,” Posada said.

On top of it all she says the heat is unbearable.

“If you’re on foot, you’re going to be in pain,” she said.

As temperatures rose this week, Community Through Hope stepped up to help people in need like Posada.

Executive Director Sebastian Martinez says over 70 people have taken advantage of the cooling center.

“In the South Bay, there are no cooling centers specifically for unsheltered folks and there’s no emergency shelter in the South Bay,” Martinez said. “So we didn’t want them to suffer just because there’s no place for them to go at this time.”

They set up a tent in the parking lot of their Chula Vista office for shade. There’s also a big misting fan to help people cool down and access to food, water and sunscreen.

“We’re also seeing different kinds of unsheltered people than we normally see,” Martinez said. “We had a lot of cases this week that are like mothers with children because school is out right now, so normally they would be in school, the kids during the day but right now they are all together outside in the hot sun.”

Despite the unsheltered South Bay population increasing 54%, according to the most recent Point in Time Count from the Regional Taskforce on the Homeless, Martinez says there is still no existing emergency shelter where folks can retreat from the heat, among other things.

“The South Bay is home to the second largest city in the county and it needs the level of action and awareness of the unsheltered crisis to match the current demand,” Martinez said.

Once rolled out, Community Through Hope will be the only unsheltered specific cooling center in the South Bay.

“There isn’t anything like this in the area for these folks to get respite,” Martinez said.

While more resources are needed to help those in need in the community, Posada is grateful for the helping hand getting her through this heat wave.

The nonprofit is now turning to the community to help with donations or volunteer.

“Community Through Hope has been very helpful to us, if it wasn’t for them I don’t know what I would do,” Posada said.