"Today, what I did was hunt cans. Me and another guy hunted cans and got them out of a dumpster. God bless the snow, because of the garbage service backed up... and they were full. Made $22 today between the two of us."
Bernard Gravley is 55 years old. He's lived on the streets in 38 different states. Even though he has nowhere to call "home"... he's found the silver lining in the bad weather.
Gravley does odd jobs wherever he can, but usually, he doesn't know what the day will bring.
"Well, you know... a good day... sky's the limit. A bad day... you're begging for your next dollar."
Gravley's no different than the hundreds of other people who make up Chattanooga's homeless population. He knows what it's like to shiver through cold nights, and says shelters like the Community Kitchen opening their doors have been "a blessing."
"Try sleeping out there on that snow and come in here. I don't think they are... I know they are. They treat me real good," said Gravley.
But no two people share the same story.
David Buse has only been homeless for 1 year and and says the transition has been heartbreaking.
"Disgusting. Helpless. Because I ain't always been this way," said Buse.
Buse sleeps at the Community Kitchen at night. During the day, the 64-year-old likes to walk by the river or sit in the park by himself.
He prefers to be alone, because he doesn't want to listen to others complain about the problems they share.
But the two men do have one thing in common. They both say the Community Kitchen saved them from the dangerous cold.
"This place is a blessing. For me anyway," said Buse.
If you want to learn more about Community Kitchen, click here.
By: Kelsey Bagwell