AIKEN, SC ( WJBF) – Staying cool in the summer heat can be hard, especially now as the temperature hovers near triple digits and feels even higher.

“With the heat index its extremely hot and some of us are just not equipped or prepared for those types of temperatures,” April Tiller, a captain with the Aiken Salvation Army said.

Not only is it uncomfortable, heat exposure can also be dangerous.

With high temperatures and a heat index at 100 degrees, Salvation Army leaders said last week they learned of at least nine cases of heat exhaustion or heat stroke in the Aiken County area.

“What we’re hoping for is that it will lower the cases of heat stroke,” Tiller said.

The Salvation Army is hoping cooling stations will help people who may not have access to AC, fans or cool water.

“People can go and get water or ice pops or just take a few minutes and beat the heat in some cool AC,” Tiller said.

For people needing a little extra help an ice cold bottle of water and place to cool off can go a long way.

“We need it for this type of weather actually,” Leon Patterson said.

Salvation Army leaders said that’s why they plan to keep the cooling stations open for as long as they’re needed.

“This is a need right now. So while we may not have a vast facility where people can come and sit down at cafeteria and cool off and get that refreshing station, the Salvation Army is here with cool bottles of water and icee pops and a couple of couches and loveseats if you need to sit down,” Tiller said.

They’re also asking the community for donations to meet their goal of 500 cases of water to keep the cooling stations fully stocked.

” Whatever you have that would help alleviate some of the cost toward the Salvation Army that would be extremely helpful,” Tiller said.