Residents in UNT residence halls may, under our regular visitation policy, have a friend or family member stay overnight for up to 3 nights. In a situation like a hurricane evacuation, we will allow them to accommodate more than one guest if they can find friends to host another person (especially with respect to gender). Dining Services has also volunteered to provide free meals to these guests for the weekend. Guests should be registered at the front desk by the student.
About 100 elderly citizens and others from Beaumont are expected to take up residence today in the American Red Cross shelter that UNT opened in its Mean Green Village to aid evacuees from Hurricane Rita.
The center opened at noon Friday and housed nearly 80 people over the weekend. All of those individuals were expected to leave the shelter before its new occupants arrived.
"To provide the shelter, many UNT staff members worked around the clock," said Richard Rafes, UNT senior vice president for administration and coordinator of the universitys emergency response team. "We're happy to work with the American Red Cross and the City of Denton to provide this shelter to those in need."
Before it opened, UNT staff prepared the facility and its grounds, ensuring that the gymnasiums in the former Liberty Christian School site were safe and hospitable.
Mattresses with linens and pillows were set up, and each guest was given a bag of personal toiletries upon arrival. Meals were provided three times a day and beverages and snacks were also available. Guests also were given access to computers and telephones as well as videos and other forms of entertainment. And, to keep everything secure, UNT police provided 24-hour security and parking oversight.
In addition, since the Red Cross is not prepared for animals in evacuee centers they manage, UNT and the North Texas Animal Rescue Alliance opened a pet shelter nearby.
The pet shelter, which was operated by nearly 100 volunteers from 21 rescue groups across North Texas, housed 27 pets, including a 9-foot boa constrictor, a bearded dragon, a parrot and several cats and dogs. In addition, two horses and a mule were stabled off site and seven other animals were placed in foster homes or kennels at the evacuees' request.
A number of pet stores and veterinarians in Lewisville and Denton donated crates, food and medical support to meet the needs of the evacuees' best friends.
In the event of severe weather, students, faculty and staff please should check the UNT Website www.unt.edu or tune in to the local television and radio stations for information about delays or closings. Also, take a minute to learn about your building’s evacuation and sheltering plans and the UNT severe weather guidelines.